Thankful for what?

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"On Tuesday, we are making our annual trip down to Union Gospel Mission to drop off a donation. Why do we go down there? This is part of it. The caring and sharing."

This week is one of my favorite times of the year. It really is the kick off for the holiday season. As relational people, we feel a deep longing to be with family and friends. To grow closer. To start the sharing of gifts and meals.
I really do tire easily when some besmirch this holiday by trying to paint it with a shallow coat of PC nonsense. They are missing the point. The day may have had is origins during the Pilgrim years, and we can discuss for hours if the early Pilgrims were hurtful or helpful to indigenous people. Or we can talk about what Thanksgiving is really suppose to be. A day to be thankful for our bountiful gifts.
Despite the fact we have just gone through a very tough, and bruising election, our great country remains simply that - great. There is a reason why we serve as a magnet to so many other countries across the globe. The American experiment worked. Even though we are going through some trials and tribulations right now, the fact remains that the United States is still the shining city on the hill for all others to see.
Our health insurance, although decimated by the Affordable Care Act, does not change the fact we still have the best health care in the world. Especially in Minnesota. Mayo, University of Minnesota Hospitals, Phillips Eye Institute, and many, many good hospitals fill our land. Diseases which at one time were a death sentence, are now treatable. Maybe not curable as yet, but treatable enough to offer some additional and viable quality of life.
We produce more food that our people can consume. Thus, our agri-business is vital in the feeding of people all over the world. Corn, soybeans, poultry, and pork are huge contributors to our exports. Thanksgiving turkeys can be bought for as little as 60 cents a pound this year, and that one bird can offer up meals for a week. Our grocery stores seem to be on every corner, and each store has thousands of different items to choose from.
This coming Thursday, families will gather from near and far. Kitchens will be steeped with the rich aroma of turkeys, side dishes and maybe even some pies cooking in the oven. Fires will be roaring in the hearths, and maybe, just maybe, there might be a football game or two to watch. Families will gather around the table when the food is ready, and in many houses, a prayer of thanksgiving will be offered up. Why? Because whether you are a believer or not, all these blessings we are grateful for, come to us because of God's unending grace.
On Tuesday, we are making our annual trip down to Union Gospel Mission to drop off a donation. Why do we go down there? This is part of it. The caring and the sharing. Seeing the look on people's faces, who are down on their luck, receive a greeting, maybe a hug, a hot meal, and some food to take with them, is something more than heartwarming.
So enjoy the week folks. It is a special time and only comes but once a year. I am looking forward to it. I already have wood ready to burn, and the turkey is thawing out. This is America at our best.