One year ago today, I sat down to reclaim November in the name of Thanksgiving. As hard as it is to believe, here we are again, another year older, hopefully wiser, undoubtedly a little different . . . in many ways.
Much has happened here in the past year. Some unbelievably wonderful things, some hard and sad things. Business as usual, I guess. One thing that continues to amaze me is how much I have to be thankful for, even when circumstances leave me feeling not particularly grateful. Consider the great New Year's Brunch debacle.
We were hosting 20 family members, bright and earlyish, for brunch on New Year's morning. Of course, we'd all stayed up late the night before and we're dragging ourselves around the kitchen, trying to muster some enthusiasm for greeting guests while simultaneously baking cinnamon rolls, scrambling eggs, and cooking sausage. At some point during the frenzied preparations, guests due in less than an hour, I ran downstairs to pull a platter from the storage shelves in the cellar. As soon as my stockinged foot hit the carpet at the bottom of the stairs, my heart sank. Water. In a place no water should be. And warm water at that.
Our hot water heater had chosen this morning, of all mornings, to rupture ~ for the second time in 6 years. Was I thankful? No, of course not. Of all the words in the dictionary that could have been used to describe me in that moment, "thankful" was not one. I was furious, frustrated, overwhelmed, and annoyed beyond belief.
But a couple of hours later, sitting down amid company over the remnants of a shared meal on this first morning of a fresh year, I did feel the stirrings of some goodwill. We now had no hot water to wash the waiting mountain of dishes. I pondered this for about 3 seconds. Then it dawned on me . . . No dishes to do! Load the dishwasher, they'll keep. And it was true that the hot water heater had gone not once but twice in a handful of years. But it was 6 days within its warranty ~ we would end up getting a new one at no cost. And although it was a holiday morning, our hot water heater had held out past Christmas morning, which would have been a much bigger bummer. All these things were worth being thankful for!
At the start of this November, I'm sitting down to once again count my blessings. Not necessarily the big-ticket items that leap to mind ~ my relationship with Jesus Christ, my family, my health, etc. ~ but the little unsung blessings that make regular (and even irregular) days sparkle with promise. I hope you'll join me. I'd love to hear what makes you thankful, from the cream in your coffee to the silver linings around your storm clouds.
Happy month of Thanksgiving!