In thinking over the years about the Thanksgivings that have been, there may come to mind different places, different faces. Some festive days may have been spent with many around a large table; with one or two beside a fire, or even perhaps spent alone. By now those places may be forgotten, and those faces may have changed or be gone. But the reason for the times, both then and now, has always been the same: to remember our blessings.
Each year we may have recounted a different set of blessings (events, circumstances, successes) that came from that period. But some things from year to year have never changed, and it is these that have enabled us to live through days of fear, trial and loss. These are the things for which we are most grateful. I mean the things of faith, of courage and of love - that pulled us through when all else had failed, when nothing else would have worked. These things are born in us to meet the demands in our lives that call them forth. These are the things upon which the continuity of our living is built. These are the bridges that connect all the seasons of the heart in its pilgrimage from victory to victory.
Yes, we are glad for the rain that finally fell after the long summer drought , but we are more grateful for the faith that sustained us through the drought when everything around us was dying. The real blessing of that experience was the faith that it taught us to live by. And so it is that we are grateful for every heartache that has taught us love, for every loss that has brought us gain , and for every ending that was the door to a beginning.
It is Thanksgiving again. And we pause to remember once more - to understand and to be most grateful for every thing that has caused us really to see, for everything that has somehow made us strong.