Thursday, November 23, 2006

giving thanks

It's our official, national day of giving thanks. Hopefully a body doesn't need an official, national day of thanks, but since it is, here is my official, national (and personal) thanks...on Tuesday, my daughter, Dena, who is in college and a few hours away, came home. Instantly the house came alive, like a huge electric switch being thrown over everyone and everything. Seeing her face and hearing her voice in my day brought quiet thank yous to God for her. Her birthday falls on the day this year! And this morning, as I was at the computer, I heard a key in the front door lock, and went to grab the door. I yanked my other daughter practically through the door and she jumped a foot in the air, not expecting it! We both howled, and went into the kitchen to address the turkey and pumpkin cheesecake. The clinking of dishes and whirrr of the mixer in our warm kitchen made me smile in gratitude. Then a letter came yesterday as well. My son weighed in with a warm "Dear Mumsy" and signed with much love at the end of a lively, typewritten letter that made me laugh. I can almost hear his voice, and I'm grateful.

I got a call yesterday evening around 4-ish. It was my husband, calling from work to let me know he wasn't feeling very well and was planning to stop at the ER on the way home from work. It isn't the type of call you'd expect on the eve of a holiday celebration, and I felt so oddly out of sorts and alone. I knew everything would be ok, but it made me realize how much I take the status quo for granted. I thanked God right then for the years we've had together without too much concern that each one would be there for the other, and there would always be a way to get through whatever came.

Then I got an e-mail message from my pastor reminding about worship practice that week and giving the list. One of our singers who is away at college will be in, and the list favors her lovely voice. I thought of how I'd seen her grow up on the team and how good it will be to see her again. I read my friends' blogs and felt grateful to know people who have so much to share about life where they are, in difficulties, but still bringing a thoughtful word or laugh. I thought about the web of friends and family I have spread all over the world pretty much, and how fortunate I am to be able to pick up the phone or e-mail and connect in a moment's notice.

And I know our country has it's challenges, but it is a blessed and a wonderful place to live. I don't worry about going through a church door, or writing an editorial or thinking I may not have food on my table tomorrow. I'm not afraid of my neighbors and know that strangers would help me if I needed it. I can think what I like and do what I want, and disagree or agree with my government without impunity. This is a place of hope, which is why so many foreigners seek her shores. I know, too, that I belong to another country-a heavenly kingdom, and that will be my permanent home, so I bow to my King in thanks for all that He has gifted me with. One day I'll be able to do that in person. But for now, I'm throwing kisses to heaven from a distance.


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