Parades and plans for Friday shopping.
Pumpkin pie and probably a family squabble or two.
It must be Thanksgiving.
For the last month, I have identified five things each day for which I am thankful. Practicing thankfulness has given me a much needed attitude adjustment.
Gratitude is perspective changing. It causes you to focus on the life-giving things we’re so apt to overlook. If I have learned anything over this last month it is that thanksgiving is to be an orientation--a way at looking at life. The real shame is that we have to set aside one day to do what should be a natural overflow of our heart’s orientation to God’s work in our life.
As Christians, we are all acquainted with the Eucharist–that time when we remember what Christ has done for us on the cross. His atonement for our sins. His redemption of our lives. His clothing us in His righteousness. His bringing us into the family of the Father who He loves. His securing our future and hiding us in resurrected life. His conquering of sin and death.
Eucharist means ‘to give thanks.’ When we remember Christ, we can’t help but give thanks. Of course here in Southern California my life is filled with many things for which I can give thanks–a family, a house, food in my fridge, beautiful beaches. There are also many things for which I am not as thankful–Sacramento’s taxes, a broken oven (lucky turkey!), and a sore foot. But these are all lesser things…lesser things we let take a place at the table and we stuff ourselves with their concerns and entitlements.
The lesser things always demand more. But the Eucharist satisfies everything. What do we really need that Christ does not provide? (If you don’t believe me, go read Ephesians 1.)
Give thanks for Jesus today. Amidst the turkey and the gravy, don’t forget the bread and the wine which makes everyday a day of thanks.