Wednesday, November 23, 2011

How's Thanksgiving Looking for You This Year?

How does Thanksgiving look this year in your country of service? If we were in the States, it would be all about stuffing our faces, watching football, raking or playing in the leaves, and maybe shopping for bargains on Friday. Best of all, it would be about family. That’s what I miss the most. Thanksgiving with extended family. How about you?

Normally we go through the motions of roasting a turkey with all the fixings, including imported cranberry sauce and pumpkin pies with cans we bring from the U.S. This year we are going away for a long weekend retreat with other ex-pat families from other countries, and we won’t be having a special feast tomorrow.

It’s like the Grinch who stole Christmas, only no one has maliciously taken anything from us. I’m thinking of the scene at the end of the book, where the Whos from Whoville are standing around the tree with no gifts, no Christmas lights, no roast beast. The Grinch, who had assumed they would give it all up, was shocked to hear the townspeople begin singing joyfully around the tree.

“He puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before.
Maybe Christmas, he thought...
doesn't come from a store.
Maybe Christmas, perhaps... means a little bit more!”

That’s what Thanksgiving is really all about. Being grateful for what we do have. Tomorrow we’ll be singing praises to the Lord, each quietly remembering our long lists of blessings. This year I am blessed to spend the holiday weekend with true family, even though my flesh and blood relatives are scattered from the Pacific to the Atlantic.

I’m thankful that we’ve all been adopted into one big family, and for the blessing of calling each of you my sisters.

Happy Thanksgiving, however you choose to recognize it.


  1. Beautiful Jamie. I am not out of country but will not be with blood family for the first time in 8 years. I am thankful for good friends who are true family and will share the holiday with them. Praying you are blessed in some surprising ways this Thanksgiving.

  2. Happy Thanksgiving, Jamie Jo and each of you! We're having a super small, non-traditional Thanksgiving with just my parents. Looking forward to it even though it is a change from our traditions! :)

  3. Just the 4 of us tomorrow and then the other folks working about 1 hour from us on Saturday. While we miss being with [bio] family I do like the slower pace, simpler holiday. Happy Thanksgiving. Fauche.

  4. Signing off until Sunday. Have a great week, y'all. Thanks for the comments. I'd appreciate prayer for all the vehicles going and coming to the retreat through Mexico today and Sunday.

  5. Ah, bless you, Jamie Jo. I recall a number of years on the mission field when we didn't celebrate Thanksgiving, but you are so right--we all have so much to be thankful for and good people to hang out with, no matter the continent or the genetic connections. Have a great retreat!


  6. I hope you'll enjoy your retreat, Jamie Jo.

    We'll be having our traditional Friday night Thanksgiving bash with our international family away from home, 16 guests! (Christmas is a lower key holiday for me.)


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