Thanksgiving has for the longest time been my favorite national holiday. Maybe it’s because of the fond memories I have of Thanksgiving as I was growing up, my family being all together, or the company that we always seemed to have on this day. Perhaps it’s the changing of the season, or the anticipation of Christmas that begins with Advent shortly after Thanksgiving. Even when I had to be away from home I always found a sense of contentment on this day, a peace that came even when Thanksgiving fell during times of illness and loss. I can’t say that it’s the food (forgive me, but I’ve never been a fan of turkey), or the Christmas sales (I am not a Thanksgiving shopper, or even Black Friday for that matter).
I just truly love Thanksgiving, and I’d like to think that it is at least in part because I feel truly grateful for everything I’ve been given. I take stock of my life, and I always come to the conclusion that, no matter what the circumstances, I am more blessed than cursed. Always! This does not mean that I haven’t experienced difficulties or pain in my life. It doesn’t mean that I’ve led a “charmed” life. That certainly has not been the case. But I think that, if I were to keep track of the pluses and minuses in life, I would definitely come out on the plus side.
Gratitude, it seems to me, shouldn’t be contingent upon how perfect life is, but rather on how good it is despite the imperfections. It’s not just about looking for the silver lining in every cloud (there may not be one), but rather about meeting every experience in life with the trust that in the end it will all work out because God’s love would never allow it to be otherwise. Even during this time of COVID-19 I have found many reasons to be grateful, and that will make it, once again, a Happy Thanksgiving.
I hope and pray that all of you too can take stock of the good things that you’ve been given, and see that they far outweigh the negative, and can be truly grateful.