Thursday, November 25, 2010

A Humble Holiday


Today is Thanksgiving! And I am ready to confess something that I've been reluctant to proclaim until today:

 It's my favorite holiday.

Up until now, I thought that as a Christian, my favorite holiday had to be Easter or Christmas, because they are directly related to very significant times in Jesus' life. I love those holidays too, don't get me wrong...

...but I don't love everything that comes with them. In today's culture, unless you are a total recluse (or Amish), you can't avoid the commercialism that surrounds these holidays. As soon as school starts and all of the supplies are confined back in the office supply section of your local what-not store, the barrage of holiday madness comes in- Halloween first, then Christmas, followed by Valentines day, Easter, and Summer/Fourth of July. But for the most part, Thanksgiving is largely overlooked.

Sure, the grocery stores run big ads about their 2 cents per pound turkeys, and we make crazy runs for that last minute can of cranberry sauce, but in all reality, we tend to jump from Halloween to Christmas with just a passing glance at the humble little holiday that really celebrates so much.

When we think of Thanksgiving, what image usually comes to mind first?

or maybe this one?

But do these ever come to the forefront of our mind?

or even this one?

Wait a minute, those are pictures that go with Christmas and Easter!! Why do they belong on Thanksgiving?

Here is a quote from the Wikipedia definition of Thanksgiving:
" Thanksgiving was a holiday to express thankfulness, gratitude, and appreciation to God, family and friends for which all have been blessed of material possessions and relationships. Traditionally, it has been a time to give thanks for a bountiful harvest. This holiday has since moved away from its religious roots."

Did you catch that last part?

I wonder how God feels about our holidays. I mean, he sent His Son to us, and so we "remember" this on Christmas, and Jesus gave His life for us, then was resurrected, which we "celebrate" on Easter. But what does "remembering" or "celebrating" do in giving THANKS to God? Do we tend to get caught up in the dinner parties, gift shopping, cooking, Santa Claus, Easter Bunny excitement of it all and forget that we should instead be thankful for what started it all and who has given us the means to do it all?


Today, I want to celebrate what God gave us at Christmas, and what Christ did for us at Easter, and how I have been blessed in EVERY single area of my life. I don't want to get so wrapped up in Black Friday ads that I forget how awesome God is to me. I want to spend time with my family, and bask in all that God has given me, from my three precious children, my fabulous husband, my generous and thoughtful parents, to my crazy siblings and their families. I want to praise Him for my home, the clothes I have and the food I will most likely overindulge on. And at the end of this day, I want to quietly commit to focus my mind and intent on what is really important in the upcoming season, and keep this spirit of Thanksgiving all year long.

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