11/22/2016: Here we are, just a couple more days until Thanksgiving...and I was thinking about the wonderful times we had back at my old family home before my parents left this world for their heavenly home. This post was originally written in 2011, updated in 2012...and now in 2016 we are still carrying on those wonderful family traditions. It seems that OUR house has become the family gathering place for holiday dinners since our move out here to the woods in 2012. The faces are sometimes the same as before, and then other years it may be a whole different crowd as the extended family establishes their own traditions with their in-laws and outlaws, etc....you know how it goes. But some things never change...and that is the love that is shared between loved ones and friends, parents, children, siblings, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and special friends who are just like family. The important thing is to be thankful for all that God has done...and to cherish every opportunity to be together. Don't let anything mar your time together...politics (especially THIS election year), differences of opinion, broken relationships, unforgiving spirits, "religion", fads...or any other crazy idea that could hurt your special time together. We never know when this could be the last time we will all be together...so put aside self...and embrace one another in love and peace...and give thanks with a grateful heart.
THIS WAS WRITTEN THIS TIME LAST YEAR (2011) AS I WAS ANTICIPATING MY FIRST THANKSGIVING WITHOUT EITHER OF MY PARENTS STILL LIVING...THIS YEAR IS STILL THE SAME, BUT I WANT TO THANK THE LORD FOR THE WONDERFUL MEMORIES AND BEAUTIFUL TRADITIONS ESTABLISHED BY MY DEAR PARENTS AGAIN...THEIR LEGACY OF LOVE LIVES ON IN EACH OF US...
Original Post, Thanksgiving 2011
Psalm 103:17-18 “But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him, and His righteousness to children’s children, to such as keep His covenant, and to those who remember His commandments to do them.”
Back during our ministry days we spent many holidays far away from our extended family due to the distance involved to get back home, and also the fact that our place of ministry often required that we stay close by to participate in the holiday activities of the church. Once our own children began to leave the nest they weren't always able to get back home to us for all of the holidays. Therefore, we often either invited local people to our home for the holiday meal, or we were invited to spend the day with others in the area.
After spending one such Thanksgiving Day at the home of distant relatives who happened to live in the same area, and without all of our own children at home with us, I made note in my journal that everything was wonderful, “but somehow something was missing…I guess the familiar traditions of my own family dinners.” I went on to say,
|My Mom and Dad...Our Last Thanksgiving all together in 2005|
|The family guys all playing a new game..."Cornhole"...|
that's the name, honest!
Yes, next week will certainly be different for me, and I am already shedding a few tears just thinking about it. I know that life will go on, and we will continue to celebrate year after year, welcoming new faces and traditions...but we will carry the memories of our precious loved ones in our hearts always...and pass on the treasures of our wonderful heritage to any who will listen.
|My Dad, Playing Horseshoes back in the good old days...|
Now THAT'S a picture I'll NEVER forget!
Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.
..cherish the moments together...
make every minute count!
Laugh, Love, and Live!!!