Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Our Thanksgiving Spread of Thankfulness


Today...the day before Thanksgiving...while I'm enjoying the aroma of sweet potatoes wafting through my home. I'm counting my blessings and my heart is overflowing with gratefulness and thanksgiving for God's many blessings which come in all shapes and sizes

Sometimes we wonder in the midst of the darker days, how God could ever intend for this to be something for which we should be thankful. And, on those bright, crisp, sun-shiny days like today, when all appears well, we tend to feel it much easier to give thanks. The truth is, the Word says, to give thanks in everything and the reality of it all is that God is the same on both kinds of days. And so are we...blessed. In the good, the bad and the ugly.

So, today, I know there are those out there who are cheerfully going about preparing a festive day tomorrow and also those who will mourn, yet...in all this, no matter what this might be...we can find something to give thanks for. We are instructed to do so by our heavenly Father.

I'd like to share some of the things I'm thankful for on this beautiful autumn Thanksgiving Eve. First, I'm thankful to belong to Jesus! There's no better place to belong I might add. Second, family and friends. What good would life be with nobody to share it? I'm thankful for my humble home and the possessions God has allowed me to be a good steward of. I'm thankful for my senses...to be able to touch, to smell, to taste yummy-ness, to see beauty and to hear laughter and music. I'm thankful for beautiful days, for rainy days, for the ups and downs, for the mountains and for the valleys. I'm thankful for the air I breathe, health, strength, joy, peace and most of all hope.

You see, there's so much to be thankful for. God has blessed us each in His own special way. If you're not feeling very "thankfully" today, my friend, be encouraged. If it's not looking like a fluffy pile of whipped cream sitting atop a piece of warm pumpkin pie for you, take heart. Kind of reminds me of that big, kettle of dumplings my Mamaw always prepared for Thanksgiving dinner. Sometimes we just have to put forth a little bit of extra effort and be willing to scrape the bottom of the pot to find what we're searching for. You know, scrape the bottom if you can't easily skim the top for those delicious dumplings. Or should I say blessings? They're definitely in there!

And one more thing, you know those dreaded Thanksgiving foods which always seem to make it on the menu every year? The ones you're not overly excited about? Maybe it's a tart cranberry salad your taste buds don't care for, maybe your mom's dressing or your aunt's famous squash casserole. Remember, it's all part of the bountiful fair which helps make up and complete your unique Thanksgiving table spread. 

So it is in life, those "side dishes", you know, the ones that we don't care for? They help make up, and complete the spread God has prepared for our lives. They serve their purpose...we don't have to like how it tastes, just enjoy it as part of the bountiful table full of God's blessed goodness. (I know, I'm still working on this daily. I challenge you to slide up to the table right beside me. We'll partake together.)

This Thanksgiving, let's savor the goodness of our Lord who blesses us abundantly EVERY day. Just to be able to enjoy His presence, to know He is near, is something to be thankful for. God's blessings upon you and yours. May God open our hearts and eyes to see the bigger picture...now, say "cheese"...we're gonna need pics of this to remember this one for years to come. 

Thankfully yours, Steffanie Russ