On Wednesday and Fridays I go to the Parish office to work on the weekly news sheet and update pages for the Parish website. Today I wanted to try something different…like writing my blog here in the office.
Distractions are a way of life—no matter what your plans for the day. Trying to write at home has temptations for me. Often the wish to accomplish writing a few pages is interrupted with a phone call, or the sudden “need” for a cuppa. Worse yet…the television is a major temptation; “I’ll just see what the movies are today.” And all too often the movie wins and I get no writing, no sewing, and no baking done.
When I began my job as a parish administrator, I asked the vicar if I could use the office as a place to work on personal writing projects. He said that I was more than welcome. Distractions would be limited, as I knew the phone would rarely ring; there are rarely any visitors and best of all, no television. So, here I sit.
Now I have to get accustomed to this version of Word. It is amazing how quickly one gets familiar with the formats and tools of one version of software, and to use a newer or older version almost seems like learning a new skill.
One thing I must not do here in the office is discover if I can watch programmes on I-Player via the Internet. Should I investigate that possibility, I would leave open a door to being seduced into time-wasting. It would be pointless to stay here—I might as well go home and watch TV there.
With us being four days into November, holidays are approaching and the contrast of being an American in Great Britain becomes clear. My American friends are focused on Thanksgiving. For many Americans thinking about Christmas before Thanksgiving is just unacceptable. I have always been one of these, as I love Thanksgiving.
As I’ve lived here in Britain, I have been surprised by the number of friends around me who want to know if I’m going to celebrate Thanksgiving. Of course, when I came here in 2003 to not celebrate the Thanksgiving Holiday felt awkward, unnatural—a trigger to homesickness for family and friends. I did cook a turkey dinner on the Saturday and invited my Sister-in-law (Seamstress Supreme) and her husband (Mr. D.) over to share it with us. It was an educational, as well as festive, evening for them.
In 2005 My Midnight Man and I went to Florida in November to be with my Mom and sister. It was Midnight Man’s first—and so far—only time to be in the USA for Thanksgiving weekend.
Last year (2010) my friend, “Calla” offered to provide some food for a Thanksgiving meal, if I was willing to cook it. It was the first time someone had approached me about Thanksgiving, instead of me inviting people over to celebrate.
This year, nothing has been planned so far. “Calla” and her husband have moved out of the local vicinity. I feel more British this year, so feel less need to make an event on that last Thursday in November.
After all, Thanksgiving is really about heart attitudes. As a Christian, to give thanks and show appreciation to God the Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit is a life-style. Even on days when I don’t feel good, or I have truly messed up, I can still say, “Thank you Glorious Father, for the blood of my Saviour, that cleanses me from all my sins, heals all my brokenness, and restores me to fellowship with You.”
Thanksgiving, praising and worshipping are choices—decisions to be made on a daily basis. For me, celebrating Thanksgiving is not about being American—its about being a Christian.
Serving Jesus, Author of our faith, “Lady Helene”