Thanksgiving may be one of my favorite holidays. The weather makes it fun to be outside, and afterwards when you cold you and cozy up next to a fire. The colors have changed in the trees and plants and animals are starting migrate and prepare for winter. And to me it’s such a comforting Time of year for some reason.
None of those things are what make Thanksgiving my favorite holiday. And it’s not the great food either. Honestly, I can make great food for myself anytime of the, so I’ve never really understood why everyone gets so excited about that. If you love the food so much, just make that stuff all the time, people! C’mon.
No, what makes Thanksgiving so special is the opportunity to slow down, to remember, and to appreciate all that God has done. And in that I love the traditions that people have to facilitate that process. Time off from work, gathering together with family and loved ones, traveling to our favorite places, working together to prepare a feast, playing games, doing a puzzle together, kids doing crafts, and yes, writing letters.
The Knoxes, Chamberlains and Gillets will all remember this well, but my Mom had started this wonderful tradition for Thanksgiving. Every year we all would write thank you letters, taking about it listing out all the things we were thankful for, and then my Mom would compile them all together and store them in a binder that we could go back to so that we could remember and see all the things all of us have been thankful for in the past. As a child I remember I would love to work on my letter in the midst of doing other crafty things for the holiday. But then, as I got older and became a teenager, I began to complain about it and procrastinate. It wasn’t just me though. We all became a bunch of Israelites grumbling in the wilderness. One year I remember my Mom just gave up on it, and I remember how strange that felt. I had been wanting to get our of writing those letters for yesterday at that point, but now that I didn’t have to, I was actually sad. And Mom wasn’t mad or upset, just matter-of-fact. She wasn’t going to keeping nagging people to show their thankfulness if they didn’t want to.
I deeply regret the part I played in ending that tradition. What a great way it was to take designated time to reflect upon all there was too be thankful for, and how cool to be able to look back to remember what you were thankful for the year before!
So, I am going to restart the same tradition with my family. Over and over God in His word reminds us to remember and be thankful, and I want my family to be obedient to that call. Just as Christmas isn’t about Santa or presents, Thanksgiving isn’t about food and family – it’s about being thankful the Creator and King for all the wonderful blessings He has given to us over and over.
Praying you have a wonderful day reflecting on all the blessings God has given!