Is it just me, or do you think retailers started displaying Christmas items earlier than usual this year? School had barely begun this past September when the one of the shops in my town had an aisle dedicated to the holiday. The big-box stores put out decorations, trees, and other accoutrements even earlier.
Sometimes it feels like Thanksgiving gets lost in the headlong rush toward Christmas. But perhaps I’m biased because Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I’m one of four children, and each November while I was growing up we were packed into the car to make the four and a half hour drive from New Jersey to Maryland to spend the weekend with my mother’s parents and extended family – a total of more than thirty people!
A farm family, my grandparents served more than just turkey and stuffing. The table was ladened with several kinds of meat as well as fresh-made bread and biscuits, potatoes, and countless vegetables. Dessert received a table all of its own and usually consisted of cakes, cookies, pies, and tarts. One of our traditions during the holiday was to share something for which we were thankful.
But how do you approach Thanksgiving when there seems to be little for which to be grateful? Perhaps you are suffering financial difficulties, loss of employment, family issues, or illness. Maybe even homelessness.
In the Old Testament (2 Chronicles 20), King Jehoshaphat found himself up against several armies. He received a report that said “a great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea.” His response? Fear. But in his fear he turned to the Lord in prayer and fasting. As a result, God answered his petition and sent an answer through one of the Israelites: “Do not fear or be dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours but God’s.”
We can count on this same promise. As we approach Thanksgiving, turn your burdens over to your heavenly Father and rest in the hope that the battle belongs to the Lord.
“Casting all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.”
I Peter 5:7 (NASB)
Linda Shenton Matchett
With a BA in Psychology and Masters in Human Resource Management, Linda Matchett has had a wide and varied career as a crisis counselor, HR generalist, B&B owner and youth center director. She is currently the Front of House, Snackbar & Catering Manager at Brewster Academy. A journalist and blogger, she has written for numerous online and print publications. An author of Christian contemporary and historical fiction, Linda is also a a motivational speaker. Available topics include Life on the (WWII) Home Front, Wartime Baking, Women in the (WWII) Workforce, The Writer’s Life, God in the Workplace, The Proverbs 31 Gal: The Woman We Love to Hate, and Ruth: Lessons from a Foreigner. Linda is a member of First Baptist Church Wolfeboro where she sings in the choir and serves as Church Treasurer and a member of the Fellowship Team.
Read some devotional blogs from around the region!