So many questions fill our minds and hearts as we anticipate this celebration of Thanksgiving Day.
I have listened to radio hosts question the Republican Candidates for Presidency asking:
“How can Evangelical Christians respond to the current crisis of immigration from their belief system?”
The answers are as varied as the candidates themselves indicating a genuine struggle between their faith and their desire to protect the people they hope to serve.
I have watched the national news reporters question a father with his young son “how do you talk to your child about the violence he has seen and heard?’ I listened as he focused the child’s attention to the multitude of candles and flowers telling him these were the signs that he was protected.
I have met with a group of concerned women as we partner to look at racism from a theological lens as we ask: ‘how do we listen for a change?” Just having people gather to listen with each other is already recognizing a change in our perspectives.
And within a program we held today I heard questions of ‘how do I find a job?’ How do I decide where I need to go next’? How can I take the gift of this day into the days ahead’? And I heard one person say that it is within community that the questions, the issues we face can be faced.
How do we celebrate a Thanksgiving Day when we are so conscious of the pain and grief that fills our minds and hearts and lives? We celebrate because there is so much to be thankful for. A family will celebrate the life of a woman wracked with pain who passed through death this morning. We give thanks for the many French people who are sitting outside in the café again ‘because this is what French people do!” We give thanks for our young adults who are passionate about working for a better world because ‘it is the right thing to do’.
The list is endless. This holiday is an opportunity to see the beauty that fills our lives and be thank-filled. It is only a day, but if we can each look more often through the lens of gratitude, the essence of Thanksgiving can become a pattern for living.
In the beauty of silence and solitude this Thanksgiving Weekend, I will be embracing each of you with a heart filled with gratitude. May you truly have a
Happy Thanksgiving Day!