Holidays seems to come and go. The older one gets it seems as if they come around faster and faster and at the same time vanish as quickly as they arrived. I’d like to say I have noticed four mistakes that people make as it relates to the Thanksgiving holiday. Unfortunately, they’re not mistakes in the sense of something that’s done wrong. Rather they are simply four observations I’ve noticed that ordinary people are doing as it relates to Thanksgiving.
Let’s take a look at these four observations; things that ordinary people are doing with Thanksgiving.
- Treat Thanksgiving as a normal day.
Ordinary people treat Thanksgiving as just another normal day.
When one begins to think of Thanksgiving as just another day, they’ve settled for what the normal person does. In the church, we’d call this “worldly thinking.” It’s actually a sign of a default attribute found in normal people, selfishness. This attribute is what I call the absence of love or the opposite of love. It’s when you’re not thinking of any other person, but only thinking of yourself. You see holidays are meant to think of others and place them first. You’ve been tricked into thinking it’s all about you. If you’re thinking of your children, you may be thinking how would you want them to spend Thanksgiving? If you’re thinking of your parents or grand-parents, you’d ask how many more Thanksgivings will I have with them? So I best make this one count. If you’re thinking of your siblings and other relatives, you’d ask when was the last time we got together? Thanksgiving is an opportunity for engaging with others, specifically family. What will you do with your Thanksgiving opportunity to not let it be just another day?
- Don’t plan for Thanksgiving.
Normal people don’t have a plan in mind for their Thanksgiving. They mostly wait until the day or week and happen upon Thanksgiving, if they do anything at all. If there is one thing you can learn from me it’s that everything we do needs a plan. If we don’t plan, we plan to fail. If you don’t plan to have the best Thanksgiving ever, you’ll fail at having the best Thanksgiving ever. Without a plan, no one will know their part or piece to the family’s puzzle. Does each member of your family know their part? Probably not, because most (51% or more) do just like most normal families. No one has set a plan and family guidelines. Not my family; as long as I have breath in my lungs, I will continue to make it thrive and be the best family we can have. What plans do you have for this Thanksgiving that will change your family forever?
- Don’t share it with others.
I must be careful here when I make this statement. Most don’t share Thanksgiving with others. Let me be clear. Substituting this thing called “friendsgiving” is just another one of the devil’s tactics to keep families apart. The only time “friendsgiving” should apply is when you have a friend with no family and you invite them with you to join your family. We can talk more about that later. As you can see I have strong feelings about this. Thanksgiving is an opportunity to do what you don’t get to do all year, spend some time with the family God has given you. Tweet that! [That might have gone to the left a little.]
This year I’ve challenged a large portion of our family to do better with getting together. We’re not going to be like every other normal family. We’re going to get together even if it kills us. Thanksgiving will not be an exception. Yes, this means traditions will have to shift and change. It means we must be willing to let others take the lead and even participate. Someone else might feel that they’re ready to make the main dish, dressing, for the family. It’s okay as long as the plan of getting the family together prevails. How can you help get a larger number of your family together this year in one place?
- Let the day slip away.
The Bible says specifically that we should number, take an account of our days. It says that the days are fleeting and they go very quickly in a given lifetime. With that said, we can not do as “the world” does (what’s normal), not account for our days, especially the special ones like Thanksgiving. You can never get a day back. So we must put our best efforts into making the day enjoyable. We will not allow our Thanksgiving day to just slip or fade away and neither should you.
Spending time with family can be tough and very emotional, but that’s the point. That’s what it means to be family. Sometimes we must cry together. Other times we must do battle together. Sometimes we battle with each other, but at the end of the day…all these things are done together. That’s what families do. So, this year take the battle to Thanksgiving, cry together this Thanksgiving, and even decide on how to fight a battle together this Thanksgiving. But by all means whatever you do, do it together and see how your family heals, grows, and becomes better together.
Happy Thanksgiving; make this one uncommon!