- Ingredients from the supermarket.
- Things to gather for the table centerpiece.
- Little five-minute cleanup jobs to do all over the house — a list that seems to grow instead of shrink!
- Advance food preparation tasks to keep the Day itself from labor overload.
And I’ve been checking them off, checking them off.
- The bread is crumbled for the stuffing and stashed in the freezer,
- the pie dough mixed.
- The rooms are altered, furniture moved, nearly ready for their occupants.
Today I’ll even pick out all the serving dishes and label what will go in each, line them up in the off-to-the-side counter furthest from action central (and listen to Husband laugh).
Others are preparing for travel. Making lists. Of countless baby necessities, folding gadgets, diapers, special foods, things to keep kids occupied during the trip and after, all the clothes everyone will need for however the weather might turn…
But there’s one thing we might all forget if we don’t put it at the top of the list.
The best way to prepare for Thanksgiving Day is to start giving thanks before that.
As I’m scrubbing under the kitchen sink, am I thanking God?
- (for the sink,
- for the water and the soap or whatever I’m using,
- for the ability to get down on my knees and do the work and get back up afterwards?)
As I do the needed laundry, am I thanking God…
- that I have some kind of machine to use instead of a washboard?
- for the clothes or towels or whatever is sloshing?
- for the nifty laundry chute Husband installed,
- and the big roll-out bin beneath it?
- for enough bedding to put on beds, and blankets enough to keep everyone warm?
- for the electric (or whatever) power to make the noisy contraption go?
As I’m preparing the rooms, am I expressing gratitude…
- for each and every individual that’s coming?
- for the blessings God’s done in each life this year?
- that they can even get here, what with gas shortages, gas prices, and other hindrances?
When irritations rise because of things I loathe to do, am I thanking God
- for the practice in patience or perseverance,
- for the challenges large and small,
- for the sense of my inadequacies and constant need for Him,
- for the reality of His presence…?
And on and on…?
I could make an enormous checklist, couldn’t I? We all could. It could also include hard thanks giving…
- for the less than pleasant people “in my way,”
- for the door that sticks or squeals,
- for the phone that doesn’t work quite perfectly…
Husband just heard that many are saying there’s not much to give thanks for this year, but on the program where he heard it, one man remembered his parents during the Great Depression, how they exhibited such gratitude for so many little things we’d just measure and find lacking.
“If you want to change your attitude” (about the day, the gathering, the troublesome travel, the aches and pains, the illness, the financial trials, the inability to make the trip to see the family and the needed solitude this may provide), “start with gratitude.”
Everything else does start falling into more pleasant places as we do that, and then we’re ready, heart and spirit—even if the feast is a hot dog on a roll, or a bowl of vegetables—for a great Thanksgiving Day!
And don’t forget Whom to Thank!
Praising God this morning, BECAUSE (from Psalm 84)…
- 557 – His “tabernacle” is lovely
- 558 – Because He is the Lord of Hosts
- 559 – Because He is the living God
- 560 – Because He gives a home in His tabernacle, in Himself, where even the sparrow and the swallow can find shelter for themselves and their young
- 561 – Because blessed are all those who “dwell in His house, whose hearts are set on pilgrimage”
- 562 – Because as they pass through the Vale of Tears (Valley of Baca) they make it a spring
- 563 – Because they go from strength to strength, till every one appears before God in Zion
- 564 – Because a day in His courts is better than a thousand anywhere else
- 565 – Because it’s better to be a doorkeeper in His house than to dwell in luxurious tents of wickedness
- 566 – Because He is a sun for His children
- 567 – Because He is a shield
- 568 – Because He gives grace
- 569 – Because He gives glory
- 570 – Because no good thing will He withhold from them who walk uprightly
- 571 – Because blessed is everyone who trusts in Him
May your Thanksgiving be richly blessed, with things beyond what eye can see and hand can touch, with things that only the soul born of God can know!