Weather-wise, it is a perfect Thanksgiving morning: sunny and calm with a few patchy clouds and an expected high temperature of about 50o.
In stark contrast, I can still vividly recall the Thanksgiving of 2010. An arctic cold front blasted through Provo-Orem with temperatures in the single digits and a deadly wind chill factor. That weekend, a big snow storm dropped at least 6 inches of snow on us. (Shudder!) And, while the 2010 Thanksgiving weather was not “typical” for Provo-Orem, neither is today’s weather typical. This is probably the best Thanksgiving Day weather since we’ve moved here. I think it even rivals the lovely November weather we experienced in Albuquerque from 1993 to 1999.
The weather, of course, is merely the back-drop – albeit, a splendid, spectacular back-drop! The major focal point, however, of what will be perfect about today is the family gathering at Dara’s house. About half of our children and grandchildren will share one another’s boisterous company and a potluck feast during one raucous, breath-taking, whirlwind celebration in the afternoon. (Dara is such a good sport – and gracious hostess – to share her spacious home that can accommodate a crowd of 20 that seems more like a crowd of 40!)
Abraham Lincoln issued his proclamation of a national “day of Thanksgiving and Praise” 150 years ago, on October 3 1863. The call to recognize God’s blessings came even amidst the sorrows and devastations of the ongoing Civil War. It is a perennial human irony that we often do not recognize God’s many blessings in our times of prosperity. Then again, in times of sorrow and trial, it is also so human a tendency to “charge God foolishly” rather than to remain faithful like Job. Therefore, because of our human weaknesses and failings, we need this special day of Thanksgiving and Praise to remember our beneficent Father, and the debt we owe to God and to so many others.
I am deeply grateful for family and friends, and God's many blessings.