Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father. – Colossians 3:16-17
It was a hard decision. Do we listen to reason, stay home, keep Rebekah quiet and in the recliner, watch the Westminster Dog show on television, and skip the Thanksgiving feast in Richmond? Or do we drive – carefully avoiding all the potholes – and enjoy a wonderful family celebration hosted by Naomi and Craig?
For Rebekah there wasn’t any decision to make, which made the call mine and – essentially – much more difficult. So I borrowed my parents’ more comfortable car, loaded up with pillows and blankets and a backpack full with hospital supplies, and drove the impatient patient in my “ambulance” so we could be together as a family.
It was a good decision.
I believe that the grandchildren alone effected healing. We commandeered the sofa for Rebekah, used every available pillow, and she enjoyed one-on-one visits with everyone. She even managed to sit at the table for the feast.
I listened to a radio show the other day where the hosts discussed how best to approach family gatherings in the wake of such a controversial, and confrontational, election cycle. The best they could come up with was to recommend completely avoiding any talk around the subjects of politics or religion. Then they suggested topics such as sports, family gossip, and pop-culture.
Really! What a lame solution! The radio talking heads didn’t come anywhere close to suggesting the one subject that – quite naturally – dominated our entire feast yesterday in Richmond. We talked about how thankful we are for a host of different things; we shared a torrent of gratitude; we openly aired our thoughts concerning the goodness of God, the blessing of family, and the privilege of living here in the remarkable, unique, beautiful United States of America!
Our daughter, Naomi, did tap her glass, pause the feast, and ask each one of us – in turn – to share one particular thing/idea/person/situation we are thankful for. There were some beautiful stories. But that is also what we’d already been doing, sharing all along. The entire afternoon and early evening was saturated with voiced blessings.
Rebekah and I love God; we love each other; we love our family; we love our church; we love our country. Our children have the same mindset. We are consummately blessed.
So enjoy a few snapshots from the Maul/Campbell/McMahan gathering. And let’s keep the ball rolling, let’s mark the gift of each and every new day with thankful hearts – DEREK