16Always be joyful. 17Never stop praying. 18Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

This week, in America, we celebrate Thanksgiving. In elementary school, I learned it is a time to remember the blessings of the new land; when the pilgrims and Native Americans sat down together to share a meal of unity. We celebrated at school wearing costumes with paper hats, candy turned into turkeys, pumpkins, multi-colored corn cobs, and sheaves of grain. On Thanksgiving day at home we ate turkey, potatoes, stuffing, gravy, cranberries, pumpkin pie and olives!

Whatever else it is, this holiday emphasizes gratefulness. This year has been a tough one for many. Jokes abound looking forward to the end of 2020. As much as it is true that this year has been odd, I’d like to challenge my readers to take time to be grateful. What is the silver lining in this year for you?

I am grateful for slower days, longer evenings, eating at home, grilling and cooking with my husband, deeper relationships with friends and family. I am grateful for the growth I observe in my children and their families.

This year has been a tough one. It is during the most difficult times that we grow the most. How have you grown this year? What are you taking with you? What will you leave behind?

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