If you’re like me, you’ve consumed more calories over the last week than you have in the last several weeks combined. You’ve eaten enough turkey to last you until Christmas and you’ve had your fill of pumpkin pie. Wait, who am I kidding? One can never get tired of pie! In all seriousness, I truly hope you and your family had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. Hopefully you had a chance to press pause on your hectic lives so that you could reflect upon your many blessings and thank God for all He has done for you and your family.
While we did have a wonderful Thanksgiving with our family, this year was a bit different than years past. You see, this year was the first Thanksgiving that my grandparents were not at the dinner table. To be honest, while we enjoyed spending time with our loved ones, things just weren’t quite the same this year. Maybe you’re in the same boat as me. Perhaps there are empty seats at your table during the holiday season, too.
As much as I love this time of year and all the festivities it brings, there are others that are hurting this holiday season and long for things to be “like they used to be” as the holidays have become more like a hole-i-day than a holiday. If this sounds a lot like you, let me point you to 1 Thessalonians 5:18. In this passage, Paul encourages us to give thanks in everything. Notice that Paul didn’t encourage us to give thanks for everything, but in everything. While we certainly don’t thank God for taking our loved ones or for sending sickness or pain, we can still thank Him IN those circumstances and IN those hard times because we know that as bad as it gets down here, we have nothing but the best to look forward to! Let me remind you that weeping may endure for a night, but joy is on the way (Psalms 30:5). There will be no empty chairs around the big dinner table one day when we all gather for the marriage supper! Oh what a day that will be when we get to spend all eternity with Jesus and all our loved ones that have beat us there…Talk about a Thanksgiving! I’m convinced that my grandparents have already found their seats and have already been telling everyone all about their family that will soon arrive. Sure, I want to enjoy the holidays with my loved ones here, but I wouldn’t mind at all to gather around the Lord’s table this year!
What about you? Have you made your reservations? As we enter into the Christmas season, there would be not greater gift for you than God’s gift of salvation. I can’t imagine heaven without my loved ones there. After all, that’s what will make heaven so sweet!
I pray that you and your family have a wonderful holiday season full of laughter and love. Make memories that will last a lifetime as one day memories will be all that we have. Don’t get caught up in all the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season. Take time to enjoy those in your life, for life is far too short!
Praying for you always,