Not one thing. Not a pot of turnip greens, not a cranberry salad. Not even the World Famous, Absolutely-Must-Be-There Butternut Squash Rolls, guaranteed to insure familial love for many hours.
The reason for this slacker Thanksgiving? A brutal round of bronchitis that wiped me out for four days. I wasn't contagious on Thursday, but no one wanted me breathing on their food just in case. I was exiled to the couch, my home away from home for most of the week.
Sitting around a feast I did not prepare, eating a life-changing bowl of Paula Deen's banana pudding, I savored the blessings of simple things that I love:
My favorite people in the world. Hands down.
A warm, charming home decorated with the stylish simplicity that so characterizes my sister.
Enjoying my mother's laughter and conversation, sounds that only a few years ago seemed gone forever.
My Thanksgiving Day seemed odd without the bustle of baking, but perhaps it was a clearer picture of the reality of my life. Thinking back, it strikes me that every day I sit down to a feast I did not prepare to which I contributed nothing.
Every day I am invited to a table in the Presence prepared for me by my loving Heavenly Father, my attendance made possible by the sacrificial grace of Christ.
I contribute nothing. I can only savor the life-changing Bread and Wine that have provided all I need.
This week, I have been praying a lot and fretting a little (okay, a lot) about some unknowns coming quickly upon me--my subbing position, some doctor's appointments. (Even my phrasing is ironic there, because, truly, isn't every week full of unknowns, whether I'm anticipating them or not?) As the holiday seasons begins, I am thankful my God is both Emmanuel, God with me, and El Roi, the God who sees me no matter where I am.
He is Alpha and Omega, the Beginning of all and the End of all, my Morning Star and Evening Star, the One Who never changes.
The One Who sets the Table for me and bids me come and dine.
"Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters;
and you who have no money, come, buy, eat!
Come, buy wine and milk, without money and without cost.
Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what
does not satisfy?
Listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare."