Social media this week is filled with memes and personal posts urging us to remember those whose Thanksgiving Day may not be spent with family and friends. Those posts are a call to be thankful for police officers, firefighters, the military, and others whose Thanksgiving Day will be spent standing between the rest of us and chaos.
Prayers, good thoughts, and thanks of some sort directed toward first responders and others is appropriate and deserved. Yet, this past weekend, I was reminded there are others we should keep in our thoughts and prayers this week.
As this is being written, two old friends are facing their first Thanksgiving alone. No, they will not be without friends and family, but they will be without their partner, their soul-mate, and spouse. One has been dealing with the loss for months, while the other’s tragedy occurred as Thanksgiving plans were being finalized. In both cases, the absence was sudden and unexpected. One minute two are one, and the next minute that team is ripped asunder.
No, this is not something one expects to read at this time of the year. This is the time of the year for reading uplifting stories about blessings and celebrations around the country, if not the world. Stories, blogs, and memes should be focused on how wonderful we feel sharing holidays with families and friends while praying our favorite football team makes the playoffs.
This year, God decided to remind me giving thanks is not easy for everyone during the holidays. Whether it occurred a few days or a few decades ago, some will be feeling a sense of loss while others are counting their blessings. While some are overeating and imbibing, others will be wishing they had one more chance to hear a voice, feel a hug, or see a smile that is now a memory.
In closing, let me suggest that each of us remember Thanksgiving and Christmas are two rough holidays for many. So, as we give thanks for our blessings, and celebrate the birth of our Savior, I pray everyone reading this will remember those who sacrifice much of their holidays to keep us safe in prayer.
As you are doing so, remember there is someone, possibly even someone close to you, who may be having trouble being thankful or feeling blessed at this time of year. They need your prayers as well.
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