Thanksgiving begins in the heart not at the table. For all of us this year thanksgiving looks different. But when I read from chronicles this slightly overused but true verse, give thanks to the lord for he is good. I realize we are not instructed to give thanks for our good things, but for HE is Good. Americans have made thanksgiving into a day, into a holiday, into an event on the calendar that we celebrate rather than an attitude we maintain. Like several holidays that at one time started out so pure and true to the actual concept, we have made thanksgiving into a commercial party. This year as we shift out of the thanksgiving norm of gathering people, preparing, planning, purchasing and cooking copious amounts of food, I am thankful for the ability to slow down, perhaps you have one at your table this year but you can slow down to realize it’s not really about us anyway and what we experience. Its all about God being good and merciful. Perhaps finally we can be still and silent enough to truly give thanks instead of celebrating thanks giving. God has cleared the obstacles that have so hidden truth from us for too long.
The majority of us wait for Thanksgiving Day to send a few meaningless prayers up to heaven for all the good things in life, then get on to the business of hosting and eating. But God has given us a moment to be hungry before we feast, to have time to get on our knees before we get to the table. He has permitted us to be isolated physically to see the isolation in our hearts from him spiritually. It is easier to see the vacancy the empty barren soul become loud when no one is around. What does give thanks mean truly? And are we still grateful when our tables are empty? We will never truly be full until we are full with the mercy of God.
The verse says “give thanks to the Lord for HE IS GOOD and His mercy endures forever.”
For HE is good, that doesn’t change with 2020 or amidst COVID-19 or in the face of death, poverty loneliness, his mercy doesn’t fluctuate with our present circumstance. This year its not likely we are going to be thanking God for a good year! But we can always thank him for his goodness and that his mercy doesn’t run out.
Can we perhaps have a clear enough schedule to remember this year, we don’t need things or dates to be thankful for, we don’t need health or wealth, we don’t need to see our blessings and many of us don’t. Some have lost family member, jobs, homes, self-respect or the election. American has taken on a whole news slew of trouble this year, but we don’t need rich foods, peace or fancy clothes and all those things at times become cladder that hides the truth, for HE is Good. Not life, not the world, not American, not even our justice system. The bible says our best most righteous deeds are filth and rags. But…He is Good.
Every year we read posts about the true meaning of thanksgiving, and what we really have to be thankful for and it becomes cliché and boring to me, except this year. This year is in my face demanding me to pay attention, when church doors are closing and masks are silencing our voices and hiding our humanity and thanksgiving is well cancelled, for some reason I feel particularly inspired to write about it, to write and remind myself thanksgiving is NOT TURKEY DAY, and it’s not about a day , an event or a plan. Thanksgiving is a heart condition, an attitude heck it can even be a personality strength, but regardless it cannot be taken away, canceled or minimized because true thankfulness begins in the heart. Thanksgiving is not about what we have and finally this year wow I realize that more than ever before, thanksgiving is motivated simply by who God is!