And I won’t wax eloquent about it. You’ve probably already heard/read just about all you care to about the historical myths and truths surrounding it, the traditions associated with it, and the proper handling of leftover turkey.
As I probably mentioned last year, we often see lengthy discussions of Thanksgiving that make no mention of giving thanks, or who we’re expected to give thanks to. But not all discussions leave that out; there’s plenty of talk about gratitude as well.
But is it like Christmas, where the holiday glow creates warm fuzzies of goodwill toward our fellowman for a time, but we soon start sniping and griping again?
I don’t know about you, but I’m fed up with complaining. It seems the more we have to be thankful for, the more we whine. I’d like to make my home today a “Gripe Free Zone,” allowing only gracious speech and thankfulness to pass the lips of all who enter. But I doubt my ability to enforce such a measure.
So instead of trying to press the rest of my family into a mold of my choosing, I’ll concentrate on conforming myself to it and let everyone else do as they choose. This is what I plan to do: today and every day for the next year, I’ll post to this blog on my newly-created “Thanks 365” page, one thing I’m thankful for.
I expect that at first, it’ll be difficult to limit myself to one per day. When I start listing my blessings, one thing leads to another until praises tumble out all over the place. But unless I miss my guess, sooner or later the flow of gratitude will slow and I’ll have to work at it. We’ll see how bubbling-over with thanksgiving I am a few months from now, when I’ve exhausted my standard praise list.
Have you ever read the book One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp? I hope to some day, but haven’t yet. I’ve heard a lot of good about it, and I like the concept. From what I’ve heard, it has a similar premise to what I propose today. I’m not copying Ann Voskamp’s idea or trying to build on what she’s started. But if you see this as a spin-off, that’s okay. Whatever gets us praising God instead of feeling sorry for ourselves.
So, you may well ask, what’s the first item on my list, the one thing I thank God for today? My cup is so full it’s hard to pour out a one-drop oblation, but here it is: I’m thankful God is leading me to appreciate the value of gratitude; I want it to take over my life.
The next time you hear me griping, remind me of that.