image courtesy of photo bucket.com

image courtesy of photo bucket.com

“You know there are kids starving in Africa right now?” It was posed to me as a question, but I knew from past experience it was really a statement, a declaration if you will. That’s when the short battle of wills and the testing of one of my parent’s patience ensued.

While I didn’t know any kids personally that were starving at the time, I knew my parents weren’t lying to me. I knew they were trying to make a point for me to finish my meal, but moreover to be grateful for what I had. It’s hard for kids to see the value in vegetables, especially green peas.

I usually mumbled something to the effect of “rather starving to death than eating peas”, but it didn’t have any effect on getting me out of forcing them down my hatch. One time, when we had a rare dessert for after dinner, my sister tried to hide her potatoes under her plate… and they weren’t mashed. But that’s a story for another time.

One dinner my parents didn’t have to work too hard to get me to consume like swine was Thanksgiving dinner. Turkey, stuffing, ham, baked beans, with bacon, of course, and gravy to name a few. Then followed by dessert that included fruit salad swimming in whip cream and pumpkin pie that was right up my alley.

It didn’t matter if we were with scads of extended family or just the six of us at Thanksgiving. When it came to dinner time my dad was always the one called on to give thanks to God for the meal we were about to devour.

My dad didn’t just thank God for the food, he’d cover every facet of our lives and make it a point to count every blessing and name them one by one. He was truly grateful. I listened to him then, but I was more focused on calming the hunger pangs… it would take decades to hear him…

I think it’s a lot like that for most of us; we know in our minds the good things we have, but it takes time and wisdom to catch up to us for us to realize deep in our souls the truth of that fact.

I’m thankful for so much. I can’t begin to grasp the depths of our Father’s grace, mercy, and love. His protection and provision are astounding to me and I’m thankful from the depths of my soul. I don’t have to be reminded that others in this life have tribulation for the likes of which staggers my mind.

I’m thankful to God for a path set before me by my Father that he allowed my mom and dad to plow before me. I’m thankful for all the things I was forced to learn, for all the things I wanted but never got. For wisdom from God through my dad.

Thanksgiving changes but the heart behind it never will. Since my dad’s passing my mom calls on me to say a blessing to God over our Thanksgiving dinner. I recount our gifts and give thanks to God above for His blessings on all of us. I’m honored to give thanks to He who gives graciously.

I pray for blessings upon you and your families too, friends.

Happy Thanksgiving and God bless.