Thanksgiving Traditions & Thankfulness - Pastor Bri Hickman - November 20, 2018

Thanksgiving Traditions & Thankfulness

           It’s Thanksgiving Day morning as the sun peeks through the blinds and hits your face, bringing a slight warmth to the chill of the air. You get out of bed, hop on down the stairs and walk into the living room where the TV is playing the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. You sit on the couch with a warm cup of coffee or cocoa and watch as the sesame street float goes by, a marching band from some random high school somewhere, and then you see the massive turkey float. All while watching, there is bustling in the kitchen of your mom and grandma making some of the traditional Thanksgiving menu items. Peeling potatoes, prepping the turkey, yeast rolls under the heater vents to help them rise, the smell of the rolls is FILLING the house. Your grandma then starts to make the homemade noodle recipe that has been in the family for years that only 2 people know the recipe for. This scenario is what every Thanksgiving Day that I can remember was like. Traditions filled with family, yummy food, and thankfulness.

          Maybe I am being nostalgic because we are currently flying to Michigan to be with family for Thanksgiving, or maybe I am a sucker for family time and traditions, but either way, traditions mean the world to me. Routine of something special that maybe just your family does, or maybe a new tradition you are starting this year!

          Other than those memories and traditions that I mentioned above, my favorite tradition my family had was to sit at the table when Thanksgiving Dinner was ready and go around the table and list off things that we are thankful for. We would thank God for the blessings He gave us throughout the year and thank him for the family that He placed each and every one of us in. When it was my grandpa’s turn he would thank the Lord for every person in our family, every opportunity that he had the past year to share the gospel with unbelievers, for the hardships that he faced through the year, and would thank Him for another year of blessings and hardships ahead. When he was finished, he would sometimes break out in singing the doxology (my grandpa sang ALL THE TIME). We as a family would join him with harmonies that were beautiful and the sound of family joining together to thank the Lord for what He has done filled the house. Sometimes He would lead our family in prayer instead, but either way this was a huge blessing for me and my family to be raised around someone who literally thanked God for EVERYTHING he had.

          Sometimes I think we forget how to thank the Lord for everything. It’s so easy for us to thank the Lord when good things happen to us, but do we thank Him for the hardships we may face? Do we thank Him for pruning us like he prunes the branches? Do we thank Him for truly everything or just the good things? This year for thanksgiving, it is my desire to be able to proudly thank Him for absolutely everything… including the tough times.

          I challenge you to do the same with me. Try to think of the times that may have been tough for you this year, and thank Him for walking through those times with you and for never leaving you. Thank Him for the blessings, the good things, and even the tough things. So I leave you with this…

What are you thanking God for this year?

1 Chronicles 29:10-13
“Praise be to you, Lord, the God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, Lord, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all. Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all. Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.”