For the fourth consecutive year the SOS Leadership team is continuing its tradition of blogging about gratitude and what matters most during the week of Thanksgiving. Today Billy Moyer kicks off the series. Stay tuned throughout the week for more perspectives on gratitude.
This is the season for Thanksgiving and it is time to take a step back and think about all of the blessings we have in our lives. It is a time to be grateful for the food we eat, the roof over our head, and the people who love us and are always there. This is a time when we “give thanks to the Lord with all our heart.”
Many times we are not thankful for those things. We instead focus on all that we don’t have. Isn’t it crazy that in this country we spend one day giving thanks and then the next day we go crazy and trample over other people just to get a good deal at a store? We start making lists of all the things we want people to get us, but what on those lists do we actually need? Yes, this is a time of thanksgiving. But it also has become a time of excess.
This Thursday I challenge you to do things a little differently. Don’t get upset because someone didn’t make your favorite kind of yams or in my case my mom’s homemade pumpkin pie. Don’t stuff yourself so much that you have to put on elastic pants. Don’t get into arguments over pointless things with your family and friends. On Friday, if you decide to go shopping in all that craziness, treat people with respect. Don’t be upset if you don’t get what you want because you already have everything that you need.
Spend this Thanksgiving actually giving thanks for What Matters Most. Spend time with the people that matter most. And think about all those who are less fortunate than you. All those people who would give anything to walk in your shoes. Let’s get rid of the excess this year when it comes to “things.” We should only have excess in love, friendship, faith, service, and gratitude.Everything else is not What Matters Most.
The late great missionary Jim Elliot said: “Give up what you cannot keep, to gain what you cannot lose.” That is what I will think about this Thanksgiving and for the rest of this year. Will you join me? Together we can take our excess, spread it out, and make a difference!