In a few short days millions of Americans will travel home for Thanksgiving. The busiest travel day for airports comes each year at Thanksgiving. Big bucks will be spent hustling home for a heaping helping of homemade love. Mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, and homemade lemon pies will all be carefully crafted by caring hands reflecting loving hearts. The recipes you crave, cherish, and hope to sample, most often reflect the foods you remember eating as a child at Thanksgiving. Going back “home” to be with family you seldom see or see every Sunday, depending upon your circumstances, is viewed as something most Americans want to do on Thanksgiving. Why is this?
Perhaps going “home” is important because it serves to remind us that no matter how successful or unsuccessful we have become, family still matters. A lawyer that is able to squeeze a confession out of a client may find himself defenseless seated next to his 80 year old dad who continues to talk to his successful 43 year old lawyer son as if the man is a 15-year-old teenager. It’s almost as if time travel happens on Thanksgiving. This is important, too. One can contemplate days gone by, while quickly fast-forwarding into the future 30 years. Perspective of life and the relevance of what really matters most, is often left in our hearts after the Thanksgiving experience just like a little spilled gravy on our best blouse from Grandma’s Thanksgiving feast. We didn’t mean for it to happen, but there it is; a stain on our shirt and a gnawing sense in our gut that life is too important to just live without a plan or purpose.
Good-hearted grandpas often ask their grandchildren what they plan to be when they grow up. More than likely these questions reflect a desire for more than gainful employment by the grandchild. These grandpas and grandmas yearn for their offspring to lead lives filled with values that reflect honesty, integrity, and the desire to help others. Most Christian grandparents and parents want their children and grand kids to know, love, and serve Christ. To be a follower of Christ is to love Him and His ways. Christ modeled honesty and integrity. He was servant to all.
Perhaps we’d all do well this Thanksgiving if we took time to do more than rush home for the good food, warm memories, and over stuff our stomachs with too much food. Maybe we should seek perspective from the Lord, understanding from our families, and encourage each other to place our trust in the Lord and His goodness rather than spend our earthly lives living to please others and success that withers with the grass. God is good. God is great. Let us thank Him for mercy, grace, and love. Amen.