"Yep, sounds about right!" I replied distractedly as I started mentally checking Christmas related items off of my ever growing list.
"We can write something up Thanksgiving related," Nico (thankfully) interjected.
I say thankfully because I was grateful for that reminder. Oh, Thanksgiving. Right. Not to mention Advent. I was so quick to rush ahead to everything that December brings, that I didn't let myself stop checking off those to-do's in order to consider Thanksgiving first. Because that's what we do, right? The holidays come along (and seem to start earlier and earlier every year) and we go into checklist mode: green bean casserole. Check. Christmas lights. Check. Gifts for Grandma. Check. Gifts for teachers. Check. Christmas dresses. Check. Baking. Check.
Checklists and organization are necessary at times (God made me and millions of others as Type A personalities after all, so I think He intends for us to use those strengths!) but are we really living our best life when we are so immersed in errands and activities that we fail to stop and thank God for all the gifts this season brings? I know I'm not.
We are called to give our thanks. ("...give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:18.) We are called to stop checking off those lists (I know, I just cringed a little, too) and just be. Be still. Be in the moment. Be thankful. Be grateful.
For no matter the season - no matter the time of year, or the season of life you may be in right now, we can find something to thank God for. Some of us may be grateful that we could drink our coffee while it was still hot. Some of us may be grateful for working hands, legs, eyes or ears. We can stop and thank God for the sunrise, or the sunset (as early as it might be these days.) For the beauty of the mountains, for the chance to hold a hand while singing Eagle's Wings. We can thank God for a child's prayer, a friend's laugh, for chocolate (Ok, if I am being honest, I'd throw my to-do list out the window for chocolate some days) or for the way the frost sparkles on our snow covered trees. Sometime this week, stop. Be still. Just be. And thank God, for that alone is a gift.
~Erynne DeVore, Director of Children and Family Ministries