Let’s Be Honest – Thanksgiving

A Cozy Thanksgiving

As the Thanksgiving week jolts into full swing, I’m constantly reminded of everything going on this week. There are the Black Friday sales and emails, food preparation for engorging ourselves on all our favorite comfort foods, family traveling, everyone congregating, memories of past Thanksgivings and the loss of gain or loved ones, Christmas music on the radio, and even the purchase and decoration of a Christmas tree. It’s overwhelming to all of our senses if we really stop and think about it.

All of this stuff is definitely part of the season, but I’d hate for it to ruin what I really think, believe, and cherish about Thanksgiving. In all the festivities and preparation (and with Christmas taking over already), I’m so tempted to forget what I’m thankful for each year.  I know a lot of people are doing that Every Day of November Thankfulness thing on Facebook, but I decided against it for a few reasons:

1. I didn’t know about it in time
2. I don’t want to come up with something just to fulfill the number slot
3. I’ll forget.

Instead, I’ve decided to focus on particular relationships this holiday season. I have so many family members I love but never take the time to get to know. I know that sounds awful and it really is awful. But don’t we just do a lot of things alongside our family during Thanksgiving, playing housekeeper and guest, and only focus on the meal being eaten rather than the people around the table?

My goal is to contemplate on the people God has given me, cultivate deep conversations, and pray that all of the food gets cooked on time. You know the whole Mary/Martha thing? I’m definitely a Martha, always doing, doing, doing. I’m preparing, cleaning, trying to be a good housekeeper during holiday seasons and festivities. This year, I want to be Mary and enjoy all of the people and relationships in my life and help cook as well. I just don’t want to miss our on my blessings on the one day when we’re supposed to really celebrate them.

I’m reminded of Abraham Lincoln‘s famous Thanksgiving proclamation(p.s. I’m hoping to go see the movie this weekend!):

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequaled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle or the ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consiousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom. No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union. 

I also usually don’t share stuff like this, but I hate Black Friday and cannot stand shopping frenzies. This really encapsulates how I feel about that day (and yes, I know why they call it Black Friday. Do you?):