This Thanksgiving is Different

people holding hands around the thanksgiving table

By Julia Mulligan, Marketing Specialist and Media Coordinator

This year, our careers look different. Our healthcare workers have made greater sacrifices of their time, talent, and treasure, providing dedicated care and weathering seasons of mourning and hope together as a community. Our firefighters have worked hard to battle new blazes across our country, protecting our homes and our families. Our charities have become ever more reliant on the kindness of others to provide for those struggling to make it through the year. Our education professionals have implemented new ways of teaching both online and in the classroom. Our technology innovators have developed new ways to keep us connected and help our industries succeed in the online space. Our local business owners have adapted to changing marketplaces, and their employees have met us with grace to provide the services we need on a daily basis.

This year, our worship looks different. Nevertheless, our heart of worship is the same. In parking lot services, virtual churches, small groups, house churches, we are reminded that our worship is bigger than the physical walls of our places of prayer. We are the body of Christ.

This year, our daily lives look different in their challenges. You may have experienced work changes with COVID-19 safety implementations, work from home transitions, or even unemployment. You may have adapted to homeschooling your kids. You may have lost a family member or friend. You might have struggled with your physical or mental health.

This year, our daily lives look different in our hope. You may have helped a neighbor in need with their grocery run. You may have donated protective equipment or money to organizations that matter to you. You may have made that daily phone call to someone you love, just because. You may have found yourself more connected to others within your households, your work, your community – and it may have been less in-person and more online, but you made time because you grew closer to what you truly value.

Our struggles may sting more; our joys may sing louder. We have discovered new ways of working, new ways of doing, a new way of living.

As we reflect on this year, we know that this Thanksgiving will be different.

This Thanksgiving, our loved ones that travel from near and far to celebrate with us may only meet virtually this year. Our gatherings over large shared meals with big groups of friends may look a bit smaller this year. Our meals may be more modest. Even the things for which we give thanks may have changed this year, becoming more intimate or granular. This Thanksgiving is different, but we are still thankful.

As Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is a time for everything, a season for every activity under the sun…” In this season, we invite you to draw nearer to God this Thanksgiving with reflection of His providence in things big and small with prayerful hearts for the year to come.

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