Thankful for imperfections…
As we officially head into the Christmas season, I’d just like you to remember poor little Thanksgiving.
Yes, we just had Thanksgiving….stay with me for a minute.
Why do we RUSH through Thanksgiving?
We rush to get food on the table. We rush to get done with dinner so we can watch the game. We rush to get cleaned up so we can rush to go shopping. We rush from one house to the next so we can spend a few minutes with family, just to rush off to yet another house to see more family or friends…then, when it’s all over, the only thing we’re thankful for is that it’s all finally over.
In all the rush, I think we lose sight of what the day really means…a day set aside to give thanks.
The day won’t be perfect….you and I both know that.
But we want it to be perfect, just like that Normal Rockwell painting.
Why do we want to be so perfect on just that day?
Aren’t we still thankful for our food, even if it doesn’t look like the picture in the magazine?
Aren’t we still thankful for Grandma, even if she can’t remember who we are?
Aren’t we still thankful for the ability to gather around a table, even if the year has been one of the worst we can remember?
We need to be thankful – not only for those perfect and wonderful blessings we beg and beg for, but also for those little moments of perfection that happen in the middle of the chaos of our ordinary lives.
I find that life is a series of moments…some are amazing moments! Some, well, not so much. But, all in all, each moment was orchestrated perfectly for me. And, I have to be thankful that God cares enough about me to do all that work for me.
After all, I don’t deserve that kind of goodness.
Neither do you.
None of us do.
But, God’s grace is enough to cover us and all of our flaws… our mistakes…our imperfections.
The dinner that wasn’t perfect. The family gathering that wasn’t perfect. The day at work that wasn’t perfect. The life that wasn’t perfect according to our plan. The perfect and good intentions that never came about.
God’s grace can cover all of it.
This year, during Sharathon, a woman called me to talk about something she had heard on one of the teaching programs on 106.9 The Light: “What if all you had left today is everything you thanked God for yesterday.”
If that were the case, I’m not sure how much I’d have right now.
Would I have a sense of smell?
The ability to remember family and friends?
The ability to walk, talk or communicate?
Gas in my car?
Air to breathe?
Money to cover the groceries?
All ten toes?
Why is it we only set aside one day each year to be thankful, and then expect that day to be PERFECT beyond our wildest dreams??
I assume you’ve seen those little “30 Days of Gratitude” emails floating around. You have to proclaim one thing you’re thankful for each day for the entire 30 days of November to help you mentally prepare for Thanksgiving. Some of the things folks are grateful for are really deep. Some are really silly.
Well, I’m going to ask you to try to be thankful for something today, no matter how small. Then, I’d like to ask you to be thankful for something tomorrow. And the next day. And the next. So that next year, when all the retailers try to make you overlook Thanksgiving, or you start to focus on the showstopping Thanksgiving dinner you’re going to work on, or if your friends ask you to find 30 things you’re thankful for, you can sit down with a truly grateful heart and make a list of things you’re thankful for that would circle the globe.
A hundred times.
Just one thing you’re thankful for. Each day.
That isn’t so hard…is it?
What about that little tree outside your window that had such pretty yellow leaves this fall?
Or that sweet old lady you see at church every time the lights are on?
The big and obvious things will be easy…it’s the little things I’m going to challenge each of us to find.
Besides, it’s the little things that make up our lives.
I’ll even start.
Today, dear one, I am thankful for you.
Okay. Ready? GO!
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