Never mind typhoon Sandy's recent trail of destruction, New Yorkers have taken the chance to be thankful; with leading retailer Macy's sponsoring the city's usual thanksgiving parade to lift its residents' spirits up.
Thanksgiving day or not, we need to be reminded that through thick or thin---and in spite of tragedies and calamities--- thankfulness is a good thing.
So many things to be thankful for:
That hubby and I woke up this morning, not yet in rigor mortis, but still kicking and strong for whatever needs to be accomplished today and in the days to come. "I'm not through with you yet," He says.
Considering that Jack's eye almost became blind because of a viral infection weeks ago---and is now back to normal---wow, thanking Him is the least I could do! Miracles do come even in the care of our doctors or the medicines they prescribe. Dr. Jesus surely uses human doctors to answer our prayers.
He daily provides our food---health supplements included, clothing, house (no matter how small). This place we can really call home---if Jesus is its foundation. Because in Him is safety, love, joy, peace.
I thank God everyday for giving our children wisdom so that they strive for real riches---those that have lasting value and God-glorifying---and make their families their priority even as they make a living and strive to be prosperous.
That's thanking and praying it forward.
We also thank God for using us---though we are limited by time, space and material resources---so that we can make a difference in the lives of others. Everyday is an opportunity to bless others, however small or insignificant our effort may seem.
And lest we forget, consider nature---the heavens, the trees, the oceans. How marvelous God's creation is! Might make us a bit conscious of being judicious with our use of water or our trash disposal, and even do our bit in lessening our carbon footprint. There's just no running out of thanks or praise for God who made everything so beautiful.
Enjoy the turkey and the party, or the thanksgiving parade and its amazing paraphernalia. But don't let the glossies blur the real meaning of thanksgiving. Or don't let just the material blessings mar the significant.
Our tables may be laden with rich and delicious things. But if we fretted and complained and sulked in the process of preparing for the party, then we really didn't enjoy thanksgiving day.
Because it's not what's on the table that counts. In Exodus, the Jews had been set free from Egypt and thus became a nation. In the wilderness, God daily provided them with manna and quail and water. Their clothing and footwear never wore out. Yet they kept on complaining and so missed their joy; more importantly, a whole generation failed to reach the promised land.
Jesus gave it all up so that we can enjoy life. "I have come that you may have life and have it to the full" (John 10:10). Another version says, "My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life."
And it's not something ethereal, it's for real! Psalm 34:8: "Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him."
So savor that turkey! More, savor His love and faithfulness. Savor the love of your family. Thanksgiving is not really thanksgiving if we don't get to taste the blessing and direct our thanks to the real blesser.
Oh Jesus, you really are the God of more than enough!