Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

It’s that time of year …

not for celebrations and parties.  Not for get-togethers with good friends and people you may know.  Not shopping for bargains and gifts, not meeting up to have a good time and not for having a nice glass of wine with like-minded folks.

Well, actually, it is that time of year, but not for everyone.

For some, this time of year means eating a cold can of beans alone in an empty room without power because the electric bill wasn’t paid.  It wasn’t paid because the baby needed medication and there wasn’t enough money for medication and electricity.

For some, this time of year means standing on the street, in the cold, wearing street clothes and house slippers because there wasn’t enough money for rent and if there wasn’t enough money for rent, there certainly wasn’t enough money for a coat and shoes.

For some, this time of year brings memories that are bitter and hurtful; thoughts of years past that ran, one into the other, with no happiness or joy.

For some, this time of year means nothing.  It is simply the passing of time while watching the world go by, just like the year before and the year before that.

For some, this time of year means family, food, friends and fellowship.  It is these people who embrace the season and enjoy it as they always have, together with the people they love and are comfortable with.

But what about all the others?

Who, when they set down to their family table laden with food, surrounded by family, warm, cozy and perfect, think of those who have nothing, expect nothing and know nothing different from the emptiness they feel every year at this time?

I and many others call ourselves followers of Christ.  We say with our voices  how much we love and want to be like Jesus.

We sing praises, bless our food and continue on in the same traditions we have followed for years.  We praise Jesus and say we want to be like Him but prove time and again that we recite words we believe but don’t, deep down, mean and we fail the very Jesus we say we want to be like.

He wants us to share what we have; not just home, warmth, family, friends and food, but the very word that would bring others to love and honor Him.

Invite a stranger to Thanksgiving dinner.  Invite several strangers.

Let’s bring someone homeless to our home and make them, for one day, family.

Let’s show them that Jesus is real and that they are loved.

This time of year is our time, the Jesus follower’s time.  Our time to put our money where our mouth is.  To be hospitable, to offer shelter and food for those who are hungry and the ones the world calls outcasts.

It is our time to take in everyone, despite everything, and to show them Jesus.

If we, who claim to be the hands and feet of Jesus don’t show love to the oppressed, be certain that the evil one will.

He will entice and enchant them, then make them slaves to his depravity and hatred of all things good.

Don’t give the devil the satisfaction of beating us to the punch.  Let us be the Jesus we claim to want to follow and lead someone to Christ by being the hands and feet of the Savior.

Make no mistake –  Satan is working hard to win the souls of the lost and if we don’t work harder, he will win because he doesn’t give up if he doesn’t get a response on the first pass.

Be Jesus to the world and don’t give up just because you can find an excuse.  Having an excuse doesn’t excuse us, but overcoming excuses and finding a way to be Jesus to the world shows our true alliance.  We are with Jesus or not with Jesus.  It is as simple as that.

Everyone reading this post is welcome to Thanksgiving Dinner at my mom’s house.  You, for one day, will be our family, you will be warm and your bellies will be full.  Must love, or at least tolerate dogs, though, because our place is lousy with them!  🙂

A historic day …

is on the horizon.

For the first time in many years (there have been several numbers floating around, but it is safe to say many, many years since and even many more until it happens again), the first day of Hanukkah and Thanksgiving Day fall on the same date.

As it happens, it is also my birthday.

It isn’t often that one has the opportunity to physically coincide with history in the making, but this year, I and all the others who share November 28 as their birthday … well, we get to gloat a bit.

It is our day, after all and the fact that it is a day that will go down in history raises the cool factor quite a few notches.

That’s what birthdays are, is that not accurate?

A celebration of our life?

The remembrance of the day we came into being on this earth?

It is pretty important.

I love birthdays.  I don’t care so much if people share them with me, although it is always a plus to be remembered, it isn’t required for it to be special to me.  It is enough to know that it is my birthday.

And now, this year, an iconic year, I share my birthday with Thanksgiving and Hanukkah.

That’s pretty awesome.

So to all the others out there who will turning a year older on a day that will go down in history, Happy Birthday, Happy Hanukkah and Happy Thanksgiving.

I don’t keep up with what’s hot and what’s not, but I’m pretty sure that somebody famous or at least quasi-famous said “Happy! Happy! Happy!”  (I don’t know who, but I see and hear it on a fairly regular basis, so someone must have started it).


Rest and relaxation … It’s all a front

Rest and relaxation, indeed.  It’s on Twitter, Facebook, Google + and nearly every other social media network on the planet.  Everybody is talking about rest and relaxation.  A few days just to themselves, with no interruptions to their complete and total relaxation. They stress the relaxation so everyone around them gets the point loud and clear that they are not to be bothered.  But the reason they can’t be bothered has little to do with relaxation.  I wouldn’t be afraid to guess that at least a third … and that, in my opinion, is being conservative … of women and a significant number of men will be spending their relaxation time pouring over websites, rss feeds, alerts, news feeds, email, texts and papers; planning, getting their strategy down and their mojo up … mapping and trying to decide where it is, out of the half dozen places the list has been narrowed to, that they intend to make their first stand.  Of course, there is the agonizing and relaxing decision as whether to go at Midnight, or be there a few hours before.

This is the same midnight that will follow Thanksgiving Day, another time of rest and relaxation.  It starts with rising extra early to prepare the turkey and dressing for baking, making rolls, rolling out pie dough and cooking up some giblet gravy.   In the midst of all this is trying to find a way to cook a casserole in the oven that is currently housing the twenty-three pound turkey that barely fits by itself without hitting the burners.  But that’s not all, because there is an urge to constantly look at the clock and think over and over that there is no way in heaven or earth that everything will be ready by dinnertime.  This restful behavior can sometimes be associated with emotional outbursts and mad fits, so it is best to delegate some of the relaxation to others so that an overload of relaxation doesn’t cause a total system shutdown.

After half the people that are expected and one hundred that weren’t have arrived for Thanksgiving dinner, the food devoured, the kitchen and dining room all but obliterated from the rest of the house, the second phase of relaxation begins.  This phase usually takes about two hours as most of the partakers of the prepared feast head off to relax after dinner.  The husbands and their cronies … well, what do they know?  But the sisters, mothers, daughters and ex-friends have gone off to pour over the papers for one last glance at the game plan while somebody has to stay behind to clean up.  This thought will bounce around  in their head the entire time that the cleanup process is in progress.  Once it is completed, all that bouncing usually causes a mood swing that leads to a mad fit and an all out argument over nothing at all but has the potential to become an all out brawl … but it doesn’t matter in the least because this is a time of relaxation.

A half an hour before midnight, armed with phone and a credit card, the most important part of the relaxation begins. The storming into the midst of warriors who have put just as much time, just as much thought and just as many hours of research into the strategy they came up with.  Suddenly, everybody is on the same ground and the urge to punch somebody in the face just for having the same idea is so strong, visions of jail cells and the embarrassment of friends and family who had done nothing to deserve it will float vividly, like a floating balloon, through their minds.  Better to save it until it can be effectively used as an excuse for self-defense.  It’s funny what goes through the mind while it’s relaxing.

After thirty-plus hours pushing, shoving, yelling, pulling, jerking, grouching, crying, stomping, stalking off and finally crawling to the car with a silly grin and a look of the insane, the relaxation session is finally, blessedly over.  The next two days will be used solely to recover from the relaxation.  By the time work begins again on Monday, the first words out of everyone’s mouth will be now i need a vacation … some relaxation time … but don’t worry overmuch …the same opportunities along with a dozen you can’t possibly go to but simply must find a way will clog calendars, pda’s and phones.  Knowing on Christmas Eve that the most important gift is locked at the office which has been locked down for cleaning and won’t be accessible until after New Year … see, there are countless opportunities for relaxation near Christmas.  Don’t give it another thought.

Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!