Friday, November 25, 2011

Give Thanks

Our Thanksgiving Tree
     Yesterday I had the privilege of preparing a Thanksgiving feast for my YWAM family here in Norway. It was so fun making all the traditional food for everyone at the base! All five of the Americans were hard at work in the kitchen---we even had three full generations represented, so it really felt like being back home cooking with a family. When it came time to feast, we shared with our 150-ish guests the history of Thanksgiving and asked that everyone write on a piece of paper what they were thankful for  to hang on our "thankfulness tree." It was so sweet to go up and read what was written throughout the meal. This was an especially difficult week for some of the families who were facing serious health problems and even separation, but yesterday was a day of truly miraculous breakthrough and there was much to put on the tree. A grateful spirit was thick in the air as we devoured our turkey and dressing, and I'm happy to report that in the end I was so full that it hurt (and as any good American can testify, that's how you know you did it right). 

     Here's some things that made it to the top of my thankfulness list this year: 1) Skype: the bridge of communication between me and those I miss and love the most 2) community: that even when I'm away from home, I still feel surrounded by a family 3) snail mail: I have a steady stream of letters coming into my mailbox from dear friends each week 4) creation: from the majesty of the Alps to the farmlands of Norway, it fills me with wonder and awe of the Creator 5) the journey: God's goodness as He patiently leads me forward into the unknown. Hallelujah! 

And just for good measure, I'll end with a song:

"Thank You" by JJ Heller

For painted purple skies 
For never telling lies
For giving all you had away
For crying when I cry
Ooh thank you... 

For changing autumn leaves 
The salty ocean breeze 
For coming down from heaven to save a wretch like me 
Ooh thank you... 

I can't understand why you left your throne
But I know that you came and you saved my soul... 

Amazing grace
How sweet the sound
I once was lost, but now I'm found
Ooh, thank you 

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