I’m bracing myself for my post-Halloween trip to Target today. Because I know what’s waiting for me. Christmas. And I’m not ready for it. Not one bit. Seriously, I want to scream, “Hey, what about Thanksgiving?” Thanksgiving is becoming more and more marginalized in the rush to get commercial Christmas going. Halloween decorations and costumes come down, Christmas trees and ornaments go up. Instead, I am embracing this 30 Days of Thanks so I don’t lose sight of Thanksgiving. Plus, it’s so consistent with a book I recently read, One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. What grabbed me from the book jacket-“[h]ow do we find joy in the midst of deadlines, debt, drama and daily duties? What does a life of gratitude look like when your days are gritty, long, and sometimes dark? What is God providing here and now?” The message is clear: take time to give thanks every day and for the simple things, too. If only we could practice this 365 days (as Voskamp’s book suggests), and not just 30 days! Oh well-I’ll aim for 30 days and see how it turns out. No promises, though 😉
So for Day One, I would like to give thanks for the men and women serving in our military. No, I’m not an Army brat and we are not a military family (despite my husband occasionally being offered the military discount because of his uber-short hair). I don’t watch Army Wives. In fact, I’m about as clueless as a person can be on the armed forces. (Shame on me) So why lead off with this, you might ask? On our flight back from Disney last week, Delta did something interesting: they handed out paper and asked if we would write a letter to our servicemen and servicewomen. Granted, Delta’s motives may be to clean up their PR mess from the summer when they charged returning troops from Afghanistan baggage fees. Regardless, just taking time to stop and think about the sacrifices of our military personnel was humbling. In a “why DON’T I appreciate them more and take time to do so” kind of way. I’ll admit it, I don’t think about them enough. Aside for praying generally about their safety and protection, I forget about them. Guilty as charged. I needed to be reminded of their generosity and bravery at 30,000 feet.
Tearjerk moment: My daughter also wrote a note, and I think she did a pretty fabulous job. So thank you to all those who assure the freedoms we so richly enjoy. For the safety and comfort we feel in our homes. And the sacrifices they and their families make year round. God bless our military!