During this Thanksgiving Holiday, what are you thankful for? Even if you are not from America, celebrate this day with us! Let’s all give pause to stop – and think about what is really important in life. The answers will vary greatly, depending on many factors, including where we happen to live on the planet. Let’s also, as we are pausing, think about life itself – the gift that it is.
“…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” Philippians 4:8
If you are someplace on the planet enjoying peace, freedom from torture or abuse, neglect, pain and suffering; if you live in a place where you have enough and your needs are met; a place where you are relatively comfortable, enjoying the companionship of friends and family; if you have a roof over your head; are not lost; are not confined to small spaces and can move about and go where you please; if you enjoy freedom from fear and are not living in terror, loneliness, deprivation; if you are not starving or thirsty and your environment is clean and fresh, and you are not being prepared to go through much worse…..as many are…..who live on factory farms, in circus’, vivisection labs, used for sport or entertainment or are alive only for the purpose of becoming clothing; if you are not at war, working in a sweat shop, not being sold into slavery of some kind; if you have clean clothing and can draw fresh water from your tap that is not polluted and can take a shower in clean water, walk the streets of your village or city or town free of fear – give thanks and remember all those who are not so fortunate – people and animals alike.
A large part of praise and worship is how we live before God on the earth he created. We can thank him, honor him, and love our God by –
- loving his creation through how we eat, aware of what many go through to become our food, opting to spare a few much misery by eating lower on the food chain
- by how we shop, opting to live simply, buy less, read labels, learn where products come from and how they are made including the packaging (watch for the sustainable FSC label). In doing so, we spare a forest or two and many a creature their lives, their skin/fur, and their homes; we spare many people the sweat of their labor in sweat shops; spare the poor and uneducated the exploitation; curb the destruction of ecosystems for consumer products
- by recycling and buying from thrift stores instead of buying new, we slow down the consumer treadmill; perhaps we will even change the consumer mindset from placing value on consumption to that of conserving, protecting, preserving, cultivating, building up and investing in making all of life flourish around us instead
- by driving less, using less water, picking up litter that’s in our paths, we make a difference in our own back yard
- by praying for those who are less fortunate, who are down trodden and exploited we release God’s Spirit upon the earth to work in and through us
“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” James 5:16
- by lending a helping hand wherever and whenever possible, looking for opportunities to present themselves to do so
- by being the voice who speaks up
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed.” Proverbs 31:8
As the Image bearers of our Great and Wonderful God, the true spirit of Thanksgiving comes not from being well fed and free from strife or suffering ourselves so much as it does from doing all we can to alleviate suffering, misfortune, tyranny, and injustice within our own space in the world as we are each called to do; in doing so, we no longer seek for ourselves only but find happiness in the well-being of others; we experience a wealth of gratitude and peace as we honor, praise, and worship the Creator in all that we do for others.
May you have a blessed Holiday. We are grateful for each and everyone of you who follow our blog – Thank you!! If you have any questions or comments, please message us! ~Kathy