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Gratitude is a Lifestyle

Today is the day the United States established a day of thanks as a national holiday, Thanksgiving Day. The Thanksgiving holidays have always been my most favorite time of year, and still are. To me it’s the entrance of the holiday season.

"as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time… the only time… when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers…." (A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens)

I remain a Christmas fanatic. Give me all things Christmas!! Pagan rituals and all!

I am resolved to use the term, Thanksgiving Day, sparingly now, because of historical connotations that many of us were not privy to when we were in grade school. I consider now, my native brothers and sisters who view this day as maybe not so pleasant. The decor, the turkeys, the television specials, the school programs must bring about a sense of disdain and remorse that many of us cannot imagine. I shared an article last year that I will re-share that may shed some light, and help us all begin to see that we all see things differently.

A day of thanks, I’m all for it. Gratitude has become a way of life for me, not a mere waving of the hands of all things good in one day! I really cannot lump into one day the heart’s gratitude. YHWH’s miraculous hand upon my life is beyond words. I share this gratitude publicly with respect to the fact that all men’s plights are not the same as mine. These have been some tough times. Untimely deaths, major losses during this pandemic, some similar, I imagine, to the things encouraged during colonization of this land. So, it almost seems ironic to display YHWH’s display of blessings in my life at the face of someone who has experienced extreme misfortunes.

So, do we not share? Do we not give thanks? Do we debunk the Thanksgiving holiday and "cancel" it? Quite the contrary. First, we grow as we learn, we learn as we grow. As we become aware of truths, we adjust. We grow precept upon precept. To see anything contrary to what we were taught as heresy, is the groundwork for ignorance. Secondly, our gratitude is personal and intimate. It has very little to do with the compilation of tangible things and everything to do with those treasures of the heart; a peace of mind, a heart free of bitterness, a soul not plagued with anxiety, a spirit that is free. Those are the things that I’m most thankful for and that cannot be capitalized in just one day.

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