Gratitude and thanksgiving

As the weekend comes to a close, I find myself with a quiet moment.  Everyone is in bed, the Christmas tree glows softly, and there’s a chill in the air outside.  The room smells like pine and I feel serene and at peace for the moment.  And then the dog promptly gags and throws up a little in the floor.

*sigh*

The long weekend was a good one though, dog barf aside.  Dinner with part of the family on Thanksgiving day and lunch with the rest of the family today.  But there was one moment that has sat with me all weekend.

My two cousins and I were seated at one of the adult tables with our spouses.  (I’m sure if you have a large family you know what the adult table is.  The kids got the card tables and the adults sat at the big table.)  And there we all are eating and having adult conversation when it suddenly struck me…where were the adults at the table?  I mean, we can’t be the ones here at the table having grown up conversations about kids and gymnastics and politics, can we?  Where were the real adults?

And the moment when I looked around at the table and realized we WERE the adults, it was like time slowed for just a second.  My cousin sitting across from me, the one who played dress up with me at Grandmother’s house.  Her husband sitting beside her.  Her daughters on the sofa, her son upstairs playing with mine.  My other cousin sitting beside me.  The one who, along with the rest of us, used to play fun games on holidays like this.  And there beside him, his wife, holding one of their three little ones in her lap.  Suddenly the children weren’t at the kids’ table anymore.  They were all grown up.  Now our children were at the kids’ table.  It was quite surreal.

And for that moment, I just wanted time to stop.  To just stay right there, while my parents and my aunt and uncle talked at the other adult table.  While our kids were all still young.  Before our hair goes gray all over and time begins to take its toll.  To just stay.

But stay, we cannot.  Time is not ours to stop.  The older I get, the faster it seems to go by.  And the older I get, the easier it can be to look back and be found wanting.  I think of things I wish I had valued at the time that I had them.  Moments in time that start to fade that I wish I could remember better.  So many things I realized I wanted to do when it was too late to do them.

But time doesn’t go backwards.  Time moves forward.  And we move with it.  And we must live in the moment while it is ours.  To enjoy what we are given as it is received.  To take those surreal moments and breathe them in while we sit in them and have the pleasure of later recalling those moments with joy for having had them.

Yes, time moves forward, but in that moment looking around the table,  my heart was full of gratitude and thanksgiving for what has been.

Advertisements

Randomness at 1am…

Almost two weeks since I sat down at this keyboard with a blog in mind.  My how time passes when you aren’t paying attention.  But please don’t hold it against me.  See my brain currently isn’t functioning at its highest capacity.  And well, time keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ into the future.  I thought, well for the sake of letting anyone know who might have an inclination to care, I haven’t fallen off the face of the earth.  Just haven’t really had anything to say that I thought was worth sharing.  Still don’t really.  My day-to-day life…well it just isn’t interesting enough to hold my attention, much less yours.  So I guess I’ll share with you just a few random thoughts that are currently floating around in my mind.  Here goes…

Why is it that in many of the mainstream clothing catalogs, all the women that are modeling plus sized clothing are not “plus sized?”  I mean come on.  If I’m gonna order that dress, can I at least see a realistic idea of what it will look like when it’s on my body?

Am I the only one who is just about exhausted with Christmas music this year?  If I hear Clay Aiken doing “Mary Did You Know” one more time, I think I will just scream.  Don’t get me wrong.  I absolutely love Christmas.  It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  (dangit, that’s a Christmas song isn’t it???)  The reason for Christmas – Immanuel – God’s plan of redemption being set into motion is the most amazing thing!  A new mom, holding this wrinkled little baby while the man who will call himself this child’s father stares in awe.  And a crowd is gathering outside…shepherds who have seen the most amazing thing just now – an angel, Gabriel, a heavenly messenger who shares the good news of this new life – this little child, who will grow to a man, who will be a Savior for us all.  Ah yes, the bleating of the sheep, the smell of the hay, the sound of Mariah Carey in the background.  Wait, what? 

I love ginger-ale. 

So, the Bible says in Genesis 50 that when Jacob died, Joseph had him embalmed.  Now keeping in mind that Jacob was in Egypt when he died so it was the Egyptians who “embalmed” him…did that mean that he was made into a mummy?  And if so, does that also mean that there’s a chance that someone could run across his body at some point?  I mean think about the Egyptian mummies that have been recovered.  Most if not all have been in such a well-preserved state that you can still get a good idea of what they looked like.  How nuts would that be?  To actually get to see what the father of the 12 Tribes of Israel looked like???

Why is it that when men age, the hair on their head starts to fall out but their eyebrows and nose hairs go insane and then hair starts growing out of their ears.  Is this some sort of dementia on the hairs’ parts that they forget where exactly it is that they are supposed to grow but know they are in the general vicinity?

Why is it that Leo DiCaprio has to have at least one scrunched-up-face, crying-while-screaming, vein-popping-out scene in almost every movie he makes?  He’s so handsome until he makes that face. 

I don’t know who it was that came up with the idea of the non-bleeding dry highlighters, but they were some smart folks.  I can just highlight away in my Bible and won’t get confused about which page/verse it was that I had marked.  If you don’t have one of those, you really should get one.  Neat little thing.

Do you think Jesus has a favorite color?

The federal government recently redesigned the one hundred dollar bill and fancied it all up with some new high-tech security features.  However, once the bills went to print, they were in fact so high-tech that the printing presses couldn’t print them properly and so 1.1 billion bills were involved in a misprint and they are currently being quarantined until somebody can figure out how to separate the bad bills from the useable ones.  Mind you, it cost our government  somewhere in the area of $120 million to print these bills that are currently unable to be circulated.  Can somebody explain this to me?  There are people in this country with no jobs.  There are people all over the world starving to death.  But we have $120 million just lying around to waste on reprinting bills?  Seriously?  Read more about that one here.

My husband is from Panama.  I once asked him during Thanksgiving how they celebrated that particular holiday in Panama.  I’ll let you think on that one a moment.

Don’t you think it’s just amazing how our sense of smell is tied to our memory?  You know, how you can smell a smell and it will remind you of a place you’ve been or a person you love (or loved).  And that whole deja vu bit where something happens and you just know it’s happened before.  Isn’t that just the craziest thing?

Hey, do you ever feel lost?  I mean like restless or misplaced but you can’t really explain it.  Like there’s no real rational reason for you to feel that way because you have a great job, great family, great life but somehow you just feel like you don’t belong?  I might not have all the answers, but this one I know (thanks to Beth Moore for pointing this out).  If you feel lost or restless, but just can’t put your finger on why…well it’s because you don’t belong here.  This temporary dwelling will never fit exactly right because it’s not where we are meant to stay.  We are built for eternity and our souls long for Home.  Our spirits ache to be with Him, to lay eyes on His glorious face.

Welp, I guess I’ll save the rest of my random thoughts for another time.  Oh and by the way, did You know that God loves you?  I don’t mean that trite little “smile, God loves you!” kind of love.  I mean that kind of love that is deeper than the ocean, that spans time and space, that covers a multitude of sins.  Well, He does.

A Psalm for Thanksgiving

Psalm 100

A Psalm for Thanksgiving.

Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth.

Serve the LORD with gladness;

Come before Him with joyful singing.

Know that the LORD Himself is God;

It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;

We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.

Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise.

Give thanks to Him, bless His name.

For the LORD is good;

His lovingkindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations.