Thursday, November 26 is arguably the best holiday of the year. Unlike Christmas, you don’t have to refinance your mortgage to celebrate Thanksgiving. It’s about simple things: family and country and soil and sunshine combining in the miracle of life – and of course there’s the FOOD. At the center of it all is a well-spread table groaning under eighty trillion calories. It’s the day when one species ceases to gobble and another begins. It’s a day when we look back and then look up, and say, “Thank you!”
But let’s be honest, it is also a day of football. Erma Bombeck said,“Thanksgiving dinners take eighteen hours to prepare. They are consumed in twelve minutes. Halftimes take twelve minutes. That is no coincidence.”
To really understand Thanksgiving you need to grasp the idea of “Thanksgiving Grace.” Thanksgiving Grace says God is not a religious God. God is not stuck up there on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, but God is out there in the world in the real lives of real people. It is God who gives you the ability to see your loved one’s face, hear the guitar licks of your favorite band, taste that nonfat double shot vente mocha with whipped cream, feel the warmth of the sun on your skin or the smell a fresh gardenia. God created this whole world and said that it was good.
Thanksgiving Grace says God so loves us that he takes his massive love and breaks it into little chunks we can understand and that touches us in the simple, everyday things of life. When was the last time you really saw and really felt and really enjoyed the things God gives you, – the face of a spouse, the laugh of a grandchild, the feel of a sweater, the joy of a song?
At Thanksgiving, we remember how God has poured out his blessings even on those who don’t know him or love him or serve him or obey him. It’s Thanksgiving Grace. We don’t deserve it, – that’s why it’s grace. Any time or at any place there is beauty or goodness or love or compassion or forgiveness or excellence in any person or idea or situation, — and it is from God.
This Thanksgiving, celebrate that our world is crammed with God’s grace, and that God is so gracious that he showers his blessings and goodness on all his creatures.