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From her column Around the Corner

around-the-corner-11-14-1 I bring you bad news…and good news. The bad news is: the 2014 World Series of baseball is over; the good news: football, whether high school, college, or NFL, is still with us; outside temperatures are milder; and the mid-term elections (with their incessant/negative ads) are over.

Thanksgiving Day will be here before you know it, and dinner will be prepared by someone other than me (I guess that’s something to be thankful for, too). My family understands that the talent of cooking escaped me. My mom only gifted a couple of my older sisters with the ability to cook. I was gifted with the ability to wash dishes. Oh well, one person can’t have all the gifts.

This is a wonderful time of the year—my favorite season. I often think, “If the wind would quit blowing so hard, the Midwest would be a fabulous place to live!” Well, maybe just “almost fabulous.” The folks here are incredible and, usually, politically correct. They often pause before they respond to you, hoping they will not say something offensive (and there are lots of us waiting and hoping to be offended). That way we can answer in a cool, martyr-like voice, “Oh, that’s okay. I’m not a complainer.” (Yeah, right.)

Others of us try to recall scriptures that support our philosophy, and then we can string together two or three verses to prove we are right. Example: “Judas went out and hanged himself,” and “go thou, and do likewise.”

Truthfully, if we want to be politically correct, we probably don’t need to refer to scripture at all. We just need to consult the “Political Correctness Czar.” Hmmm. We can be thankful we know a place where we can hide from that dude. Maybe the government will produce a “PC Guide” to help educate us on which words we can use, and which ones aren’t good.

Or, maybe we could just invent new politically correct bumper stickers to teach the new correct words and phrases we can use. It is easy to learn these if we simply follow a car bearing these stickers for a few miles. Then, when we spot another car with stickers, we can follow it until we memorize the new ones. Of course, this game can last for several hundred miles, even if the driver is the only person involved. The passengers are likely playing video games. Just saying.

In reality, it is not necessary to have a holiday to be thankful, although I, for one, would never push the idea to eliminate Thanksgiving Day. Although I do not cook, I still enjoy the turkey and dressing, and the cranberry sauce—even if it is at a favorite restaurant.

When little is expected, very little is needed to make the day a success. It becomes a time of unintended and unexpected blessing and joy. It’s even better if the weather outside is frightfully cold, and we can enjoy relaxing and watching the fire in the fireplace—especially if we have an electric starter for the faux logs.

The songwriter penned, “Give thanks with a grateful heart.” We have so much for which to be thankful! My list seems to grow each day. Of course, some things stay on it from year to year. The following are some of them:

 

  • God and His Son, Jesus, and Their maximum sacrifice for us;
  • My three children, their spouses, and seven grandchildren;
  • The Church of the Nazarene that has given me opportunities to serve;
  • Friends who serve my God, although they often are required to listen to me speak;
  • Sufficient resources to finance me in my retirement years;
  • Problems: As the song says, “If I never had a problem, I wouldn’t know that God could solve them, I wouldn’t know what faith in God could do!”*

Thanks be to God for His loving kindness!

"Through It All," copyright© 1966, Manna Music, Inc.

Justine Knight was raised in a parsonage and married to a Nazarene minister for more than 50 years.

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