Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Psalm 92:1 It is a good thing to give thanks....

     September and October mark the annual harvest of crops in the United Kingdom and North America.  As a woman of dual citizenship, I can honestly say that I benefit from having more traditions and customs to celebrate and enjoy. 
     November brings All Saints' Day on the 1st and All Souls' Day on 2nd November.  As an official Church of England (Anglican) member, these church days give me a reminder to think about those who have gone before me in the walk of faith--Hebrews 11; my family members who have gone home and see the Lord face-to-face.  
     November 5th is a British National celebration--Guy Fawkes Night--a date remembered for its political and historical significance:  an annual public day of thanksgiving for the failure of a plot by English Catholics to blow up the House of Lords on the opening day of Parliament, 5th November 1605.  It is a good day to remember that I am blessed to be a citizen of Heaven, and also a citizen of two countries where worshipping Jesus Christ openly is freely allowed.  I may not agree with the politics of 1605, or even 2010, but I am still glad that I am blessed to live in a country where I can freely express my faith.
     My 52nd birthday was on 19th November.  Love was lavished on me by unexpected presents, phone calls, birthday cards and 42 well wishes on Facebook.  My Midnight Man (Husband) took me out to dinner and purchased an MP3 player for me.  I am still learning how to use it.  
     One of the high-lights of the day was the phone call to my sister, "Dija".  She answered the phone:  "Hello".  
     "Hellooo!"  I replied.

     "Ruff ruff ruff ruff, ruff ruff.  Ruff ruff ruff ruff, ruff ruff.  Meow, meow meow meow, meow Meowww Meowww, Ruff ruff ruff ruff ruff ruff."     "I've sung it in the other languages, do I have to sing it in human as well?"  Said "Dija".  
     I was laughing out loud by now.  "No, that was great."  
      There was nothing better than being serenaded by my sister's animal band:  Hannah and the Cats.   
     This brings us to American Thanksgiving--traditionally the 4th Thursday of November.  
     Some of you know me well enough to know that I enjoy history.  I can get lost for hours trawling through websites reading about things that intrigue, puzzle, pique my curiosity.  And why?  Because deeper appreciation comes when context frames the significance, reasoning and purpose of events that have come into our lives--from daily tasks to annual observances. 
     According to my research the first Thanksgiving was 1619 in the first colony of Virginia.  Later the Pilgrims had a three day feast of Thanksgiving in 1623.  This is the traditional event most recognised in schools and by the American public.  
     After the Revolutionary war ended in 1789, George Washington declared a national day of Thanksgiving and prayer as recognition of the Providence of God.  Washington declared a 2nd day of National Thanksgiving in 1795.  These proclamations to recognise and acknowledge the Providential care of God, were the first time a governmental proclamation of this type was issued to the United States--and significantly and not initiated by the church.
     Presidents John Adams and James Madison also made proclamations to observe national days of Thanksgiving.  But it was Abraham Lincoln who was responsible for creating an annual national day of Thanksgiving.  In 1863--while the Civil War still waged--President Lincoln signed a declaration of National Thanksgiving to God to be observed on the last Thursday in November.  And it has been observed annually since 1863--147 years.  It was President Franklin D. Roosevelt who made the 4th Thursday of November the official federal day of celebration.  And in 1941 the Senate and the House of Representatives officially signed a resolution to make the 4th Thursday in November permanently fixed as Thanksgiving.  
My Sister-In-Law & Husband
     Because of my struggle with fatigue and related symptoms, I hadn't originally planned to do a Thanksgiving dinner.  But my good friend Señora L. asked if I had any plans--that she and her husband (Mr. C.) would like to celebrate with us.  We invited Midnight Man's sister and her husband and the "Dpr" Family--with whom we attend church.  Thursday was a not viable day to have the feast because of schedules and Britain not observing a national day of giving thanks; the meal was scheduled for Saturday 27th November.  Señora L & Mr. C. contributed a turkey and some vegetables.  I contributed a broccoli and cauliflower salad, desserts and all the cooking.
     My guests were due about 7:30 p.m.  I had a moment of being completely overwhelmed-nearly burst into tears, which was complicated by exhaustion--even though I'd taken a nap.  I looked at John and said, "I feel like a pregnant woman giving birth to her first child---I'M NEVER DOING THIS AGAIN!"  Once all the guests had arrived, Midnight Man and S-In-L took over the serving, I settled down and was actually thinking of having guests for Christmas dinner.  
Mr. D, Me, Senora L. & Mr. C

It's great to know that I don't have to wait for once a year to give thanks to God.  Everyday can be Thanksgiving--as indeed it should be.  The world has a way of telling us that we should want more, more, more...

But the Apostle Paul wrote "Be happy [in your faith] and rejoice and be glad-hearted continually (always).  Be unceasing in prayer [praying perseveringly]: Thank God in everything [no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks], for this is the will of God for you [who are] in Christ Jesus [the Revealer and mediator of that will}.  1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Serving Jesus, Author of our faith


  1. OK, so even this computing student gets history lessons - a very interesting lesson too, I might add. I did learn from it, I should add. Maybe one day I'll have some history snippets of my own to add. :-)

  2. dalletta a bright spot in my day

  3. There is nothing fancy about the home of Daletta & John Reed. But it a home of love -- where God is faithfully loved, where husband and wife love each other, and where a long-ago friend (like me) from America can feel love and friendliness. I should know -- I was just there and had a couple of wonderful days with Daletta and John. Thanks so much guys!
    Allen Nyhuis