Thanksgiving: 5 Suggestions for the Forgotten Holiday

Halloween is out of the way, with its $7-billion price tag for Americans. On Halloween, I started to see some posts on Facebook and other sites where people were counting down the days until another holiday. Sadly, though, it wasn’t the “next” holiday. It was Christmas. I began to see people talk about playing Christmas music, putting up decorations, and starting their shopping, since it was now “holiday season.” Let me quickly state that none of this is wrong. I’m not condemning Christmas . In fact, I like Christmas, but it always saddens me somewhat to see so many just jump from Halloween to Christmas, when there is another holiday in this “season.” In fact, it is a holiday that really reflects what a Christian’s heart should be. Preparing Our Hearts for Thanksgiving Oh, we like Thanksgiving day, but for what reason? Many folks only see that Thursday for (1) eating, (2) sleeping, (3) watching football, and (4) checking out sale ads for shopping on Black Friday . Again, none of those things is wrong, but it makes for a holiday that is, for all intents and purposes, forgotten. To me, that’s sad, because Christians should be filled with thanksgiving, and should relish an opportunity to take the time to reflect on blessings. So, with a few weeks to go until Thanksgiving Day, let me suggest some ways to prepare. None of these deal with selecting the perfect turkey or planning your TV viewing schedule around kickoff. They deal with something far more important: our heart. 1. Take stock of God’s blessings. James tells us, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights” (James 1:17). We may have sung the old hymn “Count Your Blessings” so often that it has lost the depth of its meaning to us, but it still teaches a valuable lesson. God has blessed each of us with so much. Even if you find yourself struggling financially, you still have so many gifts from the Father that you could have never gotten on your own. Thanksgiving is a great day to list just some of those things, and to be overwhelmed by just how much you have from God. 2. Remember your own weaknesses. While not as pleasant to think about, it is also worth considering just what you cannot do! With the tremendous number of blessings God has given, the reality also strikes us that we could not do these things on our own. It is also worth considering what you could not do without others. Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on your weaknesses, not as a way to “run yourself down,” but as a way to find humility in a world so short on that commodity. 3. Consider what is invaluable. My favorite part about this holiday is that it is always spent with family. That is a blessing that does not have a price tag, nor could it ever have one. We spend so much of our time thinking of what “things” are worth, how much is in our accounts, what the value of our home is, and whether or not all those things are insured. Thanksgiving provides us a time to reflect on the things that cannot have a price tag put on them. You cannot buy deep relationships. Conversation is priceless. Health and the ability to enjoy these things is impossible to price. Think on that this season. 4. Do something for someone else. If you are struggling with what is valuable, take a few moments and do an act of kindness for someone else. For one thing, it’s just the right thing to do. Also, though, it is one way to reset our priorities and remember how truly blessed we are. Volunteerism is a good way to do this, but so is just the old “random act of kindness.” Who on your street or in your office needs a pick-me-up? Who could use a visit in the hospital or nursing home? What young couple could use a free babysitter for a night so they can just get away for a couple of hours? What older person would love just one home-cooked meal? Taking care of just a need or two for someone else makes you truly thankful for what you have, and helps you forget what you might not have. 5. “Practice” thanksgiving. In other words, say you are thankful! We are told to pray with thanksgiving (Philippians 4:6), but we also need to get in the habit of saying “thank you” on a regular basis to other people, too. That one small act can change the way we view so much. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday (by far). It makes me sad that many, in practice, just overlook it and forget it. They may be off work, but they are not taking the day for what it really means. My prayer is that these 5 simple suggestions will help each of us make the most of this wonderful, but often forgotten, holiday. What are you thankful for? Meet us in the comments! Image by  David P. Smith / Shutterstock Related Articles: Hosting a Thanksgiving Dinner for Less Thankfulness quotes An argument for giving gift cards Christmas Deals Fall Financial Checklist How To Best Save Money During The Christmas Rush The seasons of life Adam Faughn is a minister in Nashville, Tennessee. He is married to Leah and they have 2 children. You can check out his personal blog or follow him on Twitter . The articles on this site are for entertainment purposes and should not be taken as financial advice. Please contact a financial professional for specific advice regarding your situation. Also, many of the CPF articles help us pay the bills by using affiliate relationships with Amazon, Google, eBay and others. Find out more here .

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Thanksgiving: 5 Suggestions for the Forgotten Holiday

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