When November arrives, many of us start to think about Thanksgiving. Our thoughts bring to mind things like: family gatherings, turkey and stuffing, pumpkin pie, days off from work or school, pilgrims and things that we are thankful for in our lives. The idea of thankfulness is the key point about Thanksgiving that is pushed at us as the day approaches.
But I wonder, is there more? Is there more to this holiday than feelings of thankfulness and appreciation to God for all that God has done in our lives and given to us? Recently I read a Thanksgiving dialogue out of an old book sitting on my shelf. The dialogue focused on the meaning of the holiday. An interesting point that was made in the dialogue was that all Christians are pilgrims. Like the pilgrims we think of on Thanksgiving, we are a wandering people. Although we are not living in a new and strange land; we are living in challenging times and seeking to journey our way through our days as disciples of Christ. Pilgrims are everyday people caring for each other and for the needs of strangers. They are people who are faithful and willing to step out in faith to live each day without knowing exactly where God will lead them and use them; but knowing that God is with them. God’s pilgrim people are trusting. They put their trust in God to provide the rain and the sunshine to help our fields and gardens flourish with food. Pilgrim people trust God for all of their needs…they recognize their need for God.
There is something more to Thanksgiving than just saying thanks to God. It’s about you and me being God’s pilgrims; giving thanks…and living thanks. We live our thanks by wandering faithfully into the familiar and unknown places of life, caring for the needs of others, and putting all of our trust in God. Pilgrims of God…have a blessed Thanksgiving.