The sun shines in the afternoon, and I feel it in my bones. Cold dark days are hard to navigate sometimes.
Thanksgiving anticipation looms in my view. Most of the shopping is finished except for broccoli that needs to be crisp and fresh. Recipes have been pulled from books and boxes. They are old and spattered with years of memories. I recognize my mother’s handwriting on one of the folded papers.
I remember other Thanksgivings. Some are full of wonder, like last year when my dear ones drove long to be here around the table. Others years found me with an ache in my heart, like the year when my mother first became sick or when there was one less person at the table.
Holidays are a mixed menu of sweetness and salty tears. It is the stuff of real life. The rain and the clouds can suddenly turn into rays of brilliant sunshine. And vice versa.
When we gather at the table this year, let us give thanks for those who are there. Whoever they are, whether relatives, long-time friends, or new acquaintances, they are gifts God has given us for a time, this very moment.
They are more important than the food or the table settings. More important than the football game or the black Friday ads. More important than the Christmas gifts we are hoping to get at a bargain. More important than Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.
We will set across the table from one another, face to face with daughters of Eve and sons of Adam, God’s image breathed into human form.
Let us give thanks for each one and love them with all of our hearts.