Well, it was 10 o’clock. The party was totally lame, totally boring. All because Jeff wasn’t there. Jeff was the glue that held this group together. Without him, people weren’t having a great time. The life of the party was missing.
Does that ever happen to Thanksgiving? Is the life of Thanksgiving missing?
It’s easy to lose our Thanksgiving connection. All you have to do is get lost in all the other things about Thanksgiving: the get-together, the food, the relaxation, the family drama. And when that eclipses our relationship with God, then we lose the connection to him. Thanksgiving becomes an opportunity for me to get what I want. Then Thanksgiving is a sham of a holiday because we’ve disconnected ourselves from God’s love.
Then how can we ever appreciate anything in life? How can we be thankful--always--even when life is difficult? If I’m not connected to God, life is nothing but a joyless rejection of his blessings. And that deserves nothing but God’s punishment.
Can you and I re-discover the connection to real thanksgiving?
St. Paul said in 1 Thessalonians 5, "Be joyful always." He was happy because the gospel worked! The gospel is good news; it is good news of God’s love for sinners. The gospel tells you that even when you were a sinner, God loved you. And the gospel tells you that God has forgiven you because Christ died to pay for your sins. Christ came to speak tender words of forgiveness to the guilt-ridden, the poor in spirit, the ones who think they are worthless in God’s eyes. These are the ones to whom Christ says, “Be of good cheer! Your sins are forgiven.”
Imagine that! A wretched wretch like me, forgiven! A sinful sinner like you has had the wall of sin torn down and the way to God opened up. Christ reconnects me and you to God. This is the reason to be joyful because we have everything we could ever need: all of God’s love, for all time.
So as you participate in your Thanksgiving ritual, whatever it might be, speak a word about the joy and thanks you have because you have been forgiven. I promise you that you will serve better food with those words than the perfect turkey. And I bet the rest of the meal will taste better, too.
0 commentsKeep Reading >>