In our more agricultural days the November celebration of Thanksgiving marked the completion of the fall harvest and the beginning of the long winter. In more recent times, it has become a time to gather with family and friends, and kickoff the annual Holiday season.
Did you know that we actually celebrate Thanksgiving each Sunday at St. Paul’s? The word Eucharist, which we celebrate each week, comes from the Greek word, eucharistia, which means to “give thanks. We bring bread, wine and our weekly collection to the altar to be blessed, a sign of bringing our entire selves, and our bounty, and offering it to God. In doing so, we are saying all that I have, and all that I am, has come from God. It is an act of giving thanks.
Giving thanks is at the center of the spiritual life as a Christian. Living a life of thanksgiving is a kind of orientation, a compass pointing you to the one to whom you belong, the one who created all life and each of us. It reveals that life is a precious gift from our creator, our God.
Giving thanks brings us into awareness that we are connected, part of something far greater than ourselves, and that we are loved and taken care of. It shows us that we are not the author of our lives, but instead participants in a life more expansive, a life of the divine. It is a connection to the true source of your life, your love, and your being.
In this month of Thanksgiving, what are you thankful for today? Who gave you that gift?
Each day, remember what you are thankful for. Some days the list will be small, on other days it will be much longer. Try it for a week. See what happens. See what living by giving thanks can do to your life.
The Rev. Noah H. Evans, Rector