Many years ago at Thanksgiving when my son, then teenaged, was watching The Simpsons (we only allowed highly intellectual television viewing), he was captivated by a now very famous scene where the Simpson children are compelled to endure a table grace at Thanksgiving, indeed the Simpson son is forced to offer it. He says, “Thanks for nothing, God, since we had to do all this ourselves.” PKs (Preacher Kids) often howl when they hear that sort of derisive review and I get why they do.
It does often seem like we do it all ourselves. And this Thanksgiving there is so much over which to worry and wish we were doing better.
I have often had the Simpsons’ spirit when writing Thanksgiving devotionals. How to say thanks for needing to restrain yourself while eating when people nearby are hungry? How to be glad when frightened over viruses and missing family and friends?
But after a lot of pondering about what Thanksgiving really means, I have come to have a simple view on the holiday. Thanksgiving is about being thankful for relationships: relationships with the people who have enriched my life; relationships with those who continue to bless me; a relationship with Jesus and trusting in that grace; a relationship with God regardless of life’s circumstances.
Those are the blessings for which to be truly thankful at Thanksgiving. And those are the blessings to continue to cultivate.
So to each of you who reads this: thank you for the blessing my life. If you are reading this, you and I probably either interact as witnesses together for the church or we are members of the same church or you and I are seekers together after the peace of Christ. In any case, thank you for being that blessing and pray let me be a blessing to you.
The Simpsons did not get it right. We do not do “all this” by ourselves. We have this life as a gift from God and are blessed to have opportunity to be a blessing to others.
Thankful for you,
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