It’s almost here!
The food, the football, the family, and the art of afternoon napping that is as much of a tradition as the carving of the turkey. At the heart of it though, it’s a day that we are asked to reflect on all that we have and be thankful. I know, I know, we are supposed to put down the fork, look around and say “hey, I’m really lucky.” What are the chances of that happening? In my experience slim to none, and not because I’m ungrateful, but I am usually wrapped up in conversations, food, making sure my son isn’t taking a bite of something and then putting it back, more food, and then the all encompassing turkey coma that causes me to sit and stare at the wall for a while. Sound familiar?
Oddly enough it’s the days leading up to the holiday that remind me that:
- I have what I need and want, and
- With these resources, I can help others who don’t want, they need.
This is when I acknowledge my luck and so I find myself stuffing money into red buckets, compiling non-perishables into bags, and donating some of those unnecessary “wants”. This will happen until December 26th and then it stops. Not because the need isn’t there anymore, but because there is no longer an extrinsic push to help. “Well that’s crap”, you may say. I agree and I could give a hundred reasons why this happens, but those are crap too. So as I call myself out, I will also tell you what I will do about it. What I will do, and what I challenge you to do is: everyday, think of 4 things that you are thankful for, and every month, find at least 2 ways to help others in need. This is not on a Mother Theresa level, it’s realistic for most people and I’m sure I will still find it hard, especially since I won’t have the imminent turkey eating to remind me. Mmmmmm, turkey.
Here is my start. Today I am thankful for: my charismatic little boy, my patient husband, it’s 56 degrees outside!, and my faith.
If you need some help, fill in the blanks.
- I am most thankful for, _____________________________________________________.
- I am lucky to have, __________________________________________________________.
- Not many people have, _______________________________. I am grateful that I do.
- I appreciate, __________________________________________________________________.
If you need help finding 2 ways to help others:
- Listen for the tinkling bells. An angel did not just get its wings, a person needs some food and those people who brave the cold outside of many stores are there to remind us.
- Go to salvationarmyusa.org . They accept online donations or you can go to a local store to give clothing, furniture, household items, or if you are feeling really generous, your car.
- stjude.org has a link for ways to help or you can purchase an ornament from both Pottery Barn and Ballard Designs. They will send part of the proceeds to St. Judes Children’s Research Hospital.
- coats-for-kids.org has coat drives, or you can make either a one-time donation or a recurring donation.
I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Go Lions! (A person can wish for a holiday miracle right?)