So thank GOD for his marvelous love,
for his miracle mercy to the children he loves;
Offer thanksgiving sacrifices,
tell the world what he's done--sing it out!
Psalm 107:21-22 (The Message)
I have a love/hate relationship with Thanksgiving. Every year I look forward to Thanksgiving with anticipation and dread. Here’s a little insight as to why.
Stuff I love about Thanksgiving:
· The food - our family describes our meal as Turkey with 9 starches
· Gathering with family and friends
· The occasional football game
· The post meal nap is pretty awesome too!
Stuff that drives me crazy about Thanksgiving:
· Do we stay or do we go (i.e. invite family here or visit them)
· If we go, who do we go to?
· What’s up with that Christmas shopping frenzy – standing in line to be the first into Wal-mart? Seriously…..
· It is THE deadline to have the Christmas lights up.
All that being said I wouldn’t change a thing. Somehow, in all the chaos and craziness, we create some of the best family memories. Regardless of where we are, there is laughter, shared stories, and the warmth and embrace of love generated by time spent together in community. Gatherings, even “forced” gatherings around a holiday, help me step outside of myself and see all that God has blessed me with.
I believe the same is true for our church family.
I recently returned from our Sr. High retreat at Lake Beauty Bible Camp. We had a gathering of 12 students and 8 adult volunteers. Definitely a time of craziness and chaos (would you jump off a 30 foot pole into the air?) that created some awesome memories. It is a very beautiful thing…..to see people, regardless of age and/or circumstance, step outside of themselves to share, listen, pray, worship, laugh, and encourage one another. It’s part of what we were created for and it resonates so strongly when we gather…..that one is lead to thank God for his marvelous love and tell the world what he’s done.
My thanksgiving sacrifices are nothing compared to the one God has made for me. I guess I better start getting those Christmas lights out…..