Let’s not bypass Thanksgiving

The day after Halloween, I put up my Thanksgiving decorative flag. A handsome turkey adorns the flag on a field of dark green, with the words “Happy Thanksgiving” written broadly over the top. I was feeling quite proud of myself for decorating early, but when I drove around Concord to run some errands later that day, I was struck by the fact that more than a few Christmas decorations were already being put up. Is Christmas already here? What happened to Thanksgiving?

I recently read an article that suggested that one in four Americans, who in the past celebrated Thanksgiving, will choose not to celebrate it this year. The author posited that the reason was the high cost of turkey, general inflation, and residual effects of the pandemic. Maybe, a growing number of our fellow Americans are questioning whether there is truly anything to be thankful for given the state of the world. 

Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday. It’s a time to rest, relax, enjoy good food, spend time with good people, and reflect on how good God has been to us. 

What do you and I have to be thankful for? God’s unfathomable Love, Mercy, and Grace, for starters. Here are a few reasons why I give thanks for these gifts from God.

  • All those things that I wish I had done but didn’t do. 
  • All those things I did that I wish I hadn’t. 
  • All those cringeworthy moments when I look in the mirror and say to myself, “Did I really say that??!!!”
  • All those times when I should have spoken up against some injustice but didn’t because I was afraid others would think less of me.

I could go on and on, but you get the drift. The good news…really Good News….is voiced nicely in the Book of Lamentations where the author writes, 

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases 
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is God’s faithfulness.            

Lamentations 3:22-23

Each morning we can start again anew in Christ with a clean slate. The past is behind us, and we are forgiven and renewed and newly equipped by the Holy Spirit to unleash God’s blessings on the world through our acts of Love, Mercy, and Grace. For that we can be truly thankful.

With thanksgiving,
Deacon Vern Cahoon