Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Friend Recalls Thanksgivings From Years Past

A few years ago my blogging friend n2l wrote a great piece about Thanksgivings from his youth. I wanted to share it with you because it hit home with me and I think it'll do the same to you. Read and enjoy.

A Thanksgiving Message

I was reading my Facebook page this morning and I took notice of a comment made  by a friend of mine in Texas. His name is Joe. It was a short, simple comment that really packed a wallop. Joe said that he wanted to thank his wife, Kim, for all the hard work she's putting into making Thanksgiving a truly special day for him and his family. Those few words hit me like a ton of bricks. With the excitement of the holidays, we (we meaning men) often take for granted the tremendous amount of time and effort that wives, Moms and Grandmas put forth in doing what they do that makes holiday gatherings extra special - cleaning the house, grocery shopping and of course cooking up feasts fit for kings. And the cleaning that follows these get togethers ain't exactly a walk in the park.

As I thumb through the memory pages in my mind recalling some Thanksgivings of yesteryear, I can smell the apricot fried pies Grandma Shoemaker used to make for us kids and the homemade biscuits the size of half loaves of bread that Grandmother Cowger was world famous for, at least with the family and some friends that shared Thanksgiving supper with us. I can hear the joyful sounds of children playing and laughing, oblivious to wonderful aromas emanating from the kitchen and the buffet that will soon be served. The buffet that one Thanksgiving somewhere in the future that they'll be talking about with their children, reliving that moment long ago that has stayed with them through the course of their lives. Kinda like I am doing right now. One of my favorite things about those Thanksgivings of my youth was saying grace before diggin' in. The honor of being picked to say grace over Thanksgiving supper was a huge responsibility, but a welcomed one. I don't remember the words, but I do remember some of the most beautiful prayers ever uttered said over the supper - so eloquent and so heartfelt. Words straight from God spoken by one of His children, and God was pleased.

As I type this, Heather is busy in the kitchen getting food prep done for our Thanksgiving Day supper, making memories that some day we'll share with our grandchildren. New smells and new memories in the making that trigger a flashback to the times of my kid hood and those Thanksgivings long since past, but not forgotten. I just hope that the Good Lord will speak through me when I say the grace at our supper tomorrow and give me the words to express just how thankful I am for the blessings in my life that are far more than a wayward son of God deserves. I have forsaken Him many times in my life, but He has never forsaken me. I have been blessed in ways that humble me and remind me that God is always nearby to pick me up when I fall. Nearby when I act like anything but a son of God. Nearby to calm me when life deals me adversity. Nearby to put some wisdom to me when my own "wisdom" fails me. Nearby when I look at my two little girls sleep, dreaming the way only a child can. Nearby when I am less than a good husband or father. Nearby. That's where God is. Nearby.

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All Original Material © Toby Shoemaker