"This is a day we can take a break from politics. It is a day of sharing and caring. It is a day of friends, family, and blessings."
What is it about this day? I have seen it many times, and it often leaves be awestruck. Average people, who just live their lives from day to day - become superstars on this Thursday in November. They open up their wallets, they open up their hearts, and sometimes jump out way of their comfort zones. Many times, this blessing of others, caring for the less fortunate, the hurting, the sick, the downtrodden - lasts all the way until the new year. And sometimes - even longer.
What is it about our humanity which would cause someone to get up at "zero dark thirty", get dressed, drive miles of dark and deserted streets to a shelter or a church, and then start cooking and preparing food. Some to be food to be eaten communally, some food to be picked up and taken home, some to be delivered.
The look on people's faces when they receive much needed food is something which cannot be described in this article. I do not have the words. It is however, experiential. In other words, you have to be there to see it, to experience it. It is something which can be imprinted upon your very soul.
Some years back, our church did an outreach right before Thanksgiving. We collected food (tons on it), took donations to buy hundreds of frozen turkeys, and then had some perishable items donated. We then gathered as friends to sort out all this food, and prepare meals to be delivered.
We had a list of names supplied by the county. Folks who had either hit a rough patch in life, or were stuck in a poverty cycle. One apartment my wife and I visited, was being rented to a young woman with two small children. We could tell the moment we entered, and saw the spartan conditions, life was not easy for this young family. We unloaded the box on her kitchen table, so she could see the turkey and all the trimmings to go with it. All she could do while holding her youngest child, was to silently look down and slowly shake her head.
I realized I had forgotten some of the perishables in the truck. I told her I would be right back and went out to get some milk, butter and ice cream. When I came back to the apartment, and this young mother saw the dairy products, that was too much for her. She was overcome by emotion. I will never forget it. My wife and I still talk about it from time to time. We were blessed to come into that young woman's life, albeit briefly. We were blessed to bless her, to bless others. All we were that day, were a small part of the hands and feet of Christ, as were so many others.
This is a day we can take a break from politics. We are not red of blue, we are instead brothers and sisters. It is a day of sharing and caring. It is a day of friends, family, and blessings.
I have said for many years now, Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Sure there is food galore, hours of parades and football, and maybe even a fire in the hearth. But it is something else which transcends all of those good things.
It is being thankful for all things good which have come our way during the past year. It is knowing we have been blessed with bountiful blessings. Finally, it is the desire to bless others, as we have been blessed. It really is as simple as that. Now to enjoy the day!