Last year Thanksgiving didn’t go anything like I’d hoped. I wok feeling unprepared and a little unfurled. The week leading up to the holiday was filled with projects that started to eat up my calendar and my babes were struck with high fevers and up for hours each night. All the crafting I had planned didn’t happen, all the historical readings I’d laid out remained still on their pages.
My baking efforts resulted in one very simple apple pie and none of the Pinterest worthy cinnamon bun and bacon turkeys I’d dreamed of waking my children up with on Thanksgiving Day. The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade trumpeted just blocks from my apartment and all I could think was… we are stuck in our rut at home… missing it. The holiday felt like a giant flop before it had even begun.
Are any of you there this week? Unable to well up thanks for the holiday approaching because your emotions are occupied by feelings of weakness and failure?
Thanksgiving comes whether we are ready or not and then Advent and Christmas are upon us and the rhythm of holiday cheer and mayhem enters our homes in all fullness. And as I ponder how Thanksgiving ushers in the entire holiday season, I can’t help but pause and consider that it is with a heart of thanks, that we prepare for Emmanuel.
To lead our families to offer thanksgiving, means that we recognize that a gift has been given.
So, to give thanks, first we must receive.
When we enter into Advent, the season before Christmas when we are waiting for the nearness of God, in anticipation for the greatest gift ever given, it is with hearts and lips fresh full of thanks. With lives changed by the gift given in the midst of our flops and failures and imperfect feasts. In our weakness, he came. So I must ask…
Do you know the gift?
Have your hands opened and taken hold of the generosity of God? He has given us his very self and to live every day in the grace what has been offered to us in this season orients our hearts to a Person whose very nature breathes thanksgiving through us every day of the year.
May our thank you’s and our Thanksgivings be the first step in receiving “God With Us.” He is here, even when we fall apart, even when we fail to meet our own expectations. He never fails us.
Happiest Thanksgiving to you and your families,