Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving and Tough Times

IHappy Thanksgiving!!!

Here's our little turkey friend from the feed store again! Don't worry, this guy isn't on someone's table today.  He's got the good life of being a breeder!  Oh yes!

I love Thanksgiving! I love getting together with family and friends. I love the food, especially yams, turkey, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie....Oh, I love the whole feast, as Mr. I would say! I love getting a reminder to be thankful for all God has provided.

I do realize though, that it can be a tough time for those who are far away from home, who don't have family, and for those who are in hospitals, jails, or in the service. When I talked to the woman doing my mammogram this week, I asked her if she was going to do anything special. She was Persian and most of her family isn't in the US.  She also doesn't like to cook much. No one invited her and her family to a Thanksgiving meal this year, so they might just do some traveling. She seemed a bit disappointed.

I have good friend who is a missionary in Honduras.  She was feeling a bit sad about not being able to eat a Thanksgiving meal with her family, eat turkey and all the fixings, and watch some American football. I kind of pushed her to invite people in her community for a Thanksgiving meal in Honduras.  So she's been REALLY busy the past few days figuring out substitutions, cooking, planning, and inviting. Of course, in Honduras, she can't get turkey, yams, cranberries, pumpkin, and a bunch of other things we'd consider traditional Thanksgiving food. But she is still preparing a feast! I think she said she expects 30 to 40 people today!  I hope she still likes me after this!!!

A couple of days ago one of my old schoolmates asked a question on a Facebook wall.  It was, "Does anyone remember being bullied in high school like the kids are today?" I won't get into it right now, but the question brought up the years from 6th to 8th grade when my dad became blind, my sister was hit by a truck and almost died, and when, instead of being loved and supported, I was bullied by both students and even a teacher. It bothered me yesterday that I felt some of the same emotions now that I felt then. I had thought I put all that stuff behind me, forgiving, and letting go. But obviously, the hurt was still there. It was so sweet, though, how a couple of people responded to my post. And then I thought of how if I hadn't gone through that terrible time, and even have been bullied, I probably wouldn't have such a heart for kids and for the poor. I wouldn't be able to spot the ones who are hungry, but are hiding it. I might not have fostered and adopted my kids. I probably wouldn't have studied as hard in school. One of the women, Tina, wrote, "The stone that is tumbled the most is the smoothest and most beautiful of all." It was so encouraging! It reminded me to look at some of these tough times as a way to make me better. Better, not bitter!

This year I have been so blessed in so many ways! There is much to be thankful to God for! But I must remember to be thankful for the way God changes me into a better person through the tough times. Because even if something might seem bad, there is always something good that can come through it.

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