I'm not one of those who thinks of all the things I am grateful for on Thanksgiving Day.
I am trying to be thankful each and every day.
Ann Voskamp's book, " One Thousand Gifts", has inspired me to be thankful and grateful each and everyday.
Why do we make one day each year, a day to give thanks?
Are we not able to express gratitude on a daily basis?
Do we need someone or some holiday to tell us to count the blessings we have been given?
Don't get me wrong. I love Thanksgiving.
I love that it brings families together (well most of the time).
I love that it causes us to give thanks.
But I wish we were thankful everyday.
For the things that have caused us joy, but also for the things that might have blind-sided us.
This year, I have been thankful for having been diagnosed with a rare form of thryoid cancer.
Thankful for cancer you ask?
YES, most definitely.
I am thankful that I was reminded vividly of the gift of life.
I know I take life for granted. I'm sure some of you do too.
What was a supposed to be an exam to see where my weird blood disorder was heading, turned out to be a life changing event, when a large nodule was seen on my thyroid.
For me, it was a gift from God. A blessing that this nodule showed up on a CT scan, and that eventually would prove to be a cancer that would require two surgeries within six days.
So yes, I am thankful for cancer. I know how precious life is.
I am also thankful for the hard times my kids have gone thru (and are still going thru). Whether they grow closer to God and cling to Him is their choice, but for me, it accelerates my need to run to my Father for comfort, for help and for hope.
This thanksgiving is the first one in 36 years that we will not be with any of our kids. This makes me a little sad, well maybe more than a little. But Scud and I realize that this is the new stage of our life. There is the high probability that this will occur more in the years to come. When your children grow up and get married and either you move away or they do, it isn't guaranteed that you will spend holidays together.
We have our annual Thanksgiving tradition and I suppose there are many families who do this same thing: where you go around the table and say what you are grateful for in the past year. It wasn't always our kids favorite activity but I think they might appreciate it as they have gotten older.
So today when it was just me and the hubs, I had the idea of giving thanks for each year we had the kids with us. I'm almost certain that when my offspring hear about this, they will be ecstatic they were not here.
It was actually an incredible gift to see how blessed we have been over the years. Scud and I each thought of 36 things we were so grateful for in our lives together. From our own individual relationships with the LORD, to our children and their spouses, and the intended spouses, to our careers, our health, our dear friends who have loved and supported us tremendously, to the ministry of Young Life that has impacted us and our family, to our spiritual mentors and many others, we are indeed blessed beyond measure.
So although it wasn't the Thanksgiving that I would have wanted, it was exactly the Thanksgiving I needed. A day to remember once again to count all the gifts that God has given me.
Now, I just have to keep up this practice of being grateful each and everyday.