Thanksgiving is such a beautiful weekend, as all across the nation people pause and offer thanks for all that they love and enjoy in life. Many will gather around food-laden tables with family and friends to reconnect with one another and the greater purposes of life. It is all about, of course, the Harvest Thanksgiving, which in rural communities is central and affirming to the way of life. Most of us who live in cities or large communities can get far removed from the land and agricultural production, but this holiday helps us all come back to our connectedness to the land, and the gathering of family and friends ties us closer to the gift of love.
As we celebrate Thanksgiving, take some time to name those things for which you are thankful but which are too often overlooked in the hurriedness of life. The acorns beneath an oak tree. The spider’s webs glistening in the dew. The fluttering of a leaf as it falls to the ground. The last rose of summer. The gorgeous blue of the autumn sky. The call of geese overhead. The call of children out on the school playing field. A crisp apple fresh from harvesting. The range of fruit and vegetables at the supermarket. Friends who surprise and encourage us. The list goes on and on, but being attentive opens our hearts and minds to offer thanks a little more often.
Thanksgiving really should be a way of life. It should be our starting place in our relationship with God. It should be our guide as we meander through our journey of life. Thanksgiving breaks us free of greed and opens up possibilities of compassion. So make that list of the things for which you are thankful and then take the next step of thanking God for all that you have and all that you are. When you do, it changes you to see that life is an incredible gift, a gift from the One who calls you beloved.
Please join us as we celebrate on Sunday October 8th at 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.
With Thanksgiving to God for each of you,
the Rev. Canon Stephen Vail