Pausing to be grateful at Thanksgiving

  • Published
  • By Chaplain (Capt.) Jeffrey Ballou
  • 439th Airlift Wing
As a nation, we pause on Thanksgiving Day to recall all that we are thankful and grateful for as a nation.

We gather as family members and friends to give thanks for all that has been given to us throughout this year as well as in years long past. We celebrate with parades, turkey dinners and all of its fixings, pumpkin pie and oh so many other wonderful desserts. We celebrate with local and national football games throughout the day.

For some, it is a prelude to Christmas shopping with all of the flyers, coupons, lists of items to buy, and the plotting of shopping plans for the next day's sale, bargains, and door busters in the early morning hours on Friday, the day after Thanksgiving.

As individuals, Thanksgiving Day is a time to reflect on all of the blessings that we have given to others as well as all of the blessings that we have from people, and from God.

It would do us all some good to think of all the blessings that we have in this life as well as in the country in which we live. Recall some of the simplest things that we take for granted every day such as our life, health, and well-being in mind, body, and soul; yet many people take these gifts of life for granted, without thinking of them or really being thankful for this wonderful gift of life.

On Thanksgiving Day, we come together as family members and friends and spend some quality time together to discuss what has happened in each other's lives throughout the year. Family members and friends are real gifts in our lives that we should always be thankful for; but sometimes, we do not take the time to either appreciate them or thank them for being in our lives.We are grateful for our jobs and/or careers that allow us to provide for our family members and ourselves, as we are thankful for the necessities of life: food, clothing, and shelter.

Thanksgiving is a day to reflect where and how life has gone on for us this year as well as how and where we would like it to go in the year to come. Take some time this Thanksgiving to spend some quiet time in whatever venue of life (praying, sitting, walking, driving, exercising, etc.) and think of all of the blessings in our lives that we are thankful for on this Thanksgiving Day.

This list may be long or short, general or detailed, covers only a few areas of life or many areas of life; but whatever is on our Thanksgiving list, let us be thankful for all that we have been given and turn in prayer to thank God for all that He has given to us in this life!

All of the above is just one aspect of Thanksgiving. For those who enjoy history, in order to gain greater knowledge of the meaning and purpose of Thanksgiving as we know it in our nation, please check into the origins of Thanksgiving from the time of the Pilgrims and Native Americans celebration of Thanksgiving to this celebration becoming a national holiday instituted by which President and in what year?

A Happy Thanksgiving to one and all!