This Thanksgiving, it may have felt like there was little in 2020 to give thanks for: a record-breaking hurricane season; wildfires that have burned over 8 million acres of land in the United States, including homes and businesses; destructive flooding in other parts of the world; never-ending wars and conflicts and the resulting migration of those innocents seeking safety and peace. Add on to all of that the deaths, ongoing physical and emotional problems, and the unimaginable negative economic effect of the pandemic, and it really does sound like we have to dig deep to bring to light a sense of gratitude.
However, in the midst of all of this gloom and doom, if you take time to stop and ponder, you can find that there really is much to be grateful for. If you recognize that you are still standing amid all the chaos; if you have family, friends or neighbors to turn to in your need, or to respond to in their need; if you can look outside at a picture-perfect sunrise and know that you live another day; if you take a moment to feel the breeze on your face or listen to the song of a bird, you may find that it is gratitude that wells up in you unbidden.
Yes, the year has been unimaginable, but you are still here. Yes, the world seems to be a mess of pain, suffering and doubt, but daily you may discover new and creative ways to make it better and help those around you. In this season of giving thanks, you can still uncover in your deepest self an outpouring of gratitude for what remains. You can still find the courage to say yes to all that is to come. Thanks be to God.
– Blog entry by Sister Joyce Lehman