Here are my memories and thanks for this Thanksgiving. I hope that your memories are good and that you have much for which to be thankful.
My memories of Thanksgiving are many and diverse. But all in some way or another involve food, travel, and/or my family.
Growing up, my family meant my parents, grandparents, brothers and sister. Then it meant my wife and my children. And since Ann has been so much of my life, her children, grand-children, and great-grand-children as there as well (and thank God for Skype).
If one thinks of Thanksgiving, one must think of food and travel. I have the memory of my mother using an electric roaster every year for almost thirty years and remembering that every time we used this roaster the dials on the electric meter spun almost out of control. There were my attempts to roast a turkey on the grill (it works but you need a spit). And then there was the one dinner where our chihuahua, Pepe, decided he wanted one of the turkey legs, the one bigger than him, for his own personal Thanksgiving treat. I also remember one post-Thanksgiving trip where I got stuck in Colorado during a massive snowstorm.
But one year, I was alone and unable to get to Memphis and my family as I would like to have done. It was looking like it would be a bleak and dreary Thanksgiving. In the loneliness of that moment, I found another family, the family of Christ. A local church was hosting a Thanksgiving dinner and I was able have a very simple meal. It may have been a simple meal of turkey, mashed potatoes, and green beans but, as Arlo Guthrie might sing, it was a Thanksgiving meal that couldn’t be beat.
A few years later, I was part of a church which opened its hearts and doors to those who were lost, forgotten, or alone and provide another Thanksgiving dinner that couldn’t be beat. This would later lead to a wonderful feeding ministry. (See Thanksgiving, 2006 for details about these two dinners.)
I have plenty of memories and much to be thankful for each Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is about being with one’s family, enjoying the food (especially Ann’s apple pie).
But more than anything else, I am thankful that I am part of Christ’s family and that we can share God’s Grace in so many different ways.