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Posts Tagged ‘Thanksgiving’

It was deep dark in my hotel room, and cold.  The only light came from outside my window – intermittent flashes of eerie green accompanied by an odd popping sound.  I picked up the phone to call the front desk, but the line was dead.  I tried to see what time it was, but the clock was dead, too.  Ah.  No power.

I groped through the unfamiliar surroundings to find my watch.  Thanks to the occasional flash of green light from outside, I could see the time.  3:00 a.m.

Shivering in the dark, I sat by the window and watched as power lines snapped under the weight of a thick layer of ice.  A tree branch fell with a crack, a thud, and a muffled tinkling sound like some plastic chandelier crashing to the ground. 

I had been hired by the local orchestra to sing the soprano solos in Handel’s Messiah.  They did their best to accommodate the singers, but the monstrous ice storm left eighty per cent of the city with no power.     

On my third day there, the day of our first performance, enough of the city had power that a hotel became available – with heat, water and light.  When I set my suitcase down in my new room, I just about cried for joy.  (I’m pretty sure an angel chorus was singing the “Hallelujah” chorus on my behalf.)   

No more sleeping in my coat, hat and gloves!  No more frigid showers!  No more dark, unfamiliar hallways!  No more meals from the only gas station in town with power!

I have never been as aware of the comforts of everyday life in America as those few days when I didn’t have them.

Isn’t that just so human?  I mean, isn’t it so typical for us to take it all for granted?  There are so many blessings heaped on us that we have become numb to them.

Most of us in this country get to choose what shoes we’ll wear today.  We don’t have to travel any farther than our kitchen sink for clean water.  Many of us would like to shed a few extra pounds because we have more than enough to eat.  But we are used to those things…

Every now and then, I catch myself taking it all for granted.  And I pray, “God, let me not grow numb to the blessings!”

This Thanksgiving, I pray this for you, too. 

I pray that you have eyes to see your many blessings.  I pray that you remain sensitive to each gift-wrapped moment given you by God.  I pray that your blessings are too numerous to count and too wonderful to ignore.

And when you find yourself in that frame of mind, I pray that you will bless others – not because you’re supposed to, but because you will burst with gratitude if you don’t.

Happy Thanksgiving!

“I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.”  (Ps. 69:30, NIV)

 

New on the Family page today: a song to teach your kids how to count quarters.

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I saw a quote on a church marquis this week that has stuck with me.  It read, “Thanksgiving is good.  Thanks-living is better.”  True words.  Am I thankful?  Yes.  Am I living my thankfulness?  Well, I’m going to have to examine that one.

Here is my take on Thanks-living:

Thanksgiving is being mindful of your blessings.  Thanks-living is being mindful of the needs of others.

 

Thanksgiving is thanking God for your bountiful blessings.  Thanks-living is sharing your bounty with others.

 

Thanksgiving is naming your blessings.  Thanks-living is naming the Giver.

 

Tomorrow, as you enjoy time with family and friends, as you name your blessings one by one, as you reflect on lessons learned and wisdom gained, may you discover more ways to live out your gratitude in response to God, whose love and goodness never end.

Happy Thanks-living!

“Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!”  (1 Chronicles 16:34, ESV)

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