African outfits

African outfits
Our crazy family

Thursday, November 24, 2011

A Thankful Heart is a Happy Heart

Two things came to my mind when I woke up this morning:  The first one is that we have only 6 weeks from today that we board a plane to Africa - that is going to go by so fast!  The second was the fact that it is Thanksgiving Day and that got me thinking of all that I am thankful for.  The obvious would be that I am thankful for my husband, my kids and my God, but truthfully I wake up most mornings feeling thankful for these vital parts of my life.

 I struggle some with having to be told that today is the day we have to be thankful.  It stresses me out to prepare for this day of thankfulness and now add to that the stores trying to pressure us to shop the day after Thanksgiving or even the day of.  Once I get over myself, and my family pitches in to get our home "company ready", I'm really thankful for the excuse to get together with my extended family.  Even though I talk to my sister frequently on the phone, we go weeks and weeks without seeing each other.  She doesn't live that far away and I used to see her every day when I watched her girls, but now the only way we see each other is by a special appointment.  So I'm thankful that today will bring us together.

Actually, since we already have extended family living with us, most of our evening meals are a joyful event around here.  We spend hours around our round kitchen table laughing and sharing life with each other.  Visitors are always welcome and at times we have crammed 9 - 11 people around our 6 person table.  The difference is, there is no stress to have an extra clean house or to have just the right food.  There is no expectations, which if I am totally honest, is my problem.  Expectations put so much pressure on everyone.  Unmet expectations make me crabby and are usually the source of contention with my husband and I.  So today I am consciously trying to prepare my heart as well as my table with as little stress as possible.  I will be delegating jobs to my family, I cooked the turkey overnight, I got up early and had time to read my Bible and reflect on all the blessings God has given me.

 I feel excited for the fun to begin, not because George Washington (or Lincoln or Roosevelt) decided today would be the day we give thanks, but because I really am thankful for the people I have in my life.  God Bless you and have a joyful Thanksgiving!

Psalm 92:1 - 2
"It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
to sing praises to your name, O Most High;
to declare your steadfast love in the morning,
and your faithfulness by night."

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