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A New Thanksgiving Tradition

For many of us, holidays can be hard. We may see family members we have problems with. We may feel lonely and unappreciated. We may ache for deeper meaning and blessings than we currently experience. I want to share some things with you that can make your holiday better and more fulfilling that it has been in the past. With a very little effort, the holidays can be more special than you could ever hope. I pray you will join me in trying something new this year.

 It's so easy to focus on the negative and so bad for us to do so. The Bible calls us to be thankful for everything, even the dark clouds of life which bring us much needed rain; even the winter blizzards that kill off disease, and protect the slumbering seeds of flowers and harvet that rest dormant beneath the frigid snow.

 As we approach Thanksgiving this year, I want to invite you to do something you can share with family and friends around your dinner table. The attitude of gratitude is really good for us. I hope you'll try this simple exercise. If you do, let me know how it blesses your Thanksgiving holiday in a whole new way.

 1. First, list all the bad things you can think of that happened to you this year. Reflect on them and see if somehow God used some if not all of them for your good. Journal on them if you like. Then see if you can thank God for them, even the ones that don't yet make sense. He makes all things work for our good if we love Him and want only His perfect will for our lives. Remember, if you want His will, you are in it! I did this today and almost all the things that seemed bad, god used for my good.

 2. Next, think of all the good things you can remember since last Thanksgiving. List them on paper, and take a moment over each one to thank God for these unmitigated blessings. Savor God's goodness as you do this. Let His Presence touch your heart. Tell Him how much you appreciate Him. When you sense his delicious love, simply enjoy it, and let Him enjoy you.

 3. Pass this exercise on to your family and friends with whom you will share the holiday. Invite them to join you in doing this exercise.

 4. Finally, on Thanksgiving Day, turn off the football games and parades and distractions and take 15 minutes or so to share what you learned from this exercise with your friends and family this Thanksgiving.  You may find this will become a new Thanksgiving tradition for you to enjoy.

 I pray you have the most blessed Thanksgiving Day ever, and that you use it to reconnect with God and your loved ones in a new and special way. If this exercise blesses you drop me a line and tell me what happened when you tried it.

 I am thankful for each of you this year. I love you all, and pray that your hoildays will be rich, warm and joyful, and that even the rain washes things clean and brings forth fruit in your life.


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