I have always been very strict about giving the Thanksgiving holiday its due space and time.
In my house, that means no Christmas music, movies, or decorations until after we have all feasted on turkey, sweet potato casserole, and pumpkin pie… and recovered from that feast by lounging on the couch and watching some football.
But, I’ll admit, this year I’ve been tempted to skip right ahead to the Christmas cheer.
After all, 2020 has taken a toll on everyone. I don’t think any of us need to be reminded why.
What I do need to be reminded of are the many reasons to be thankful.
This year, we need Thanksgiving. Scripture calls us to “give thanks in all circumstances,” not to “give thanks in all circumstances except for 2020.”
This prayer from The Valley of Vision, a collection of Puritan prayers, gave my weary soul the perspective it needed to stop focusing on the circumstances of 2020 and to start rejoicing for the gift of grace—and prepare my heart for this season of Thanksgiving. I pray it does the same for you.
O My God,
Thou fairest, greatest, first of all object,
my heart admires, adores, loves thee,
for my little vessel is as full as it can be,
and I would pour out all that fullness before thee
in ceaseless flow.
When I think upon and converse with thee
ten thousand delightful thoughts spring up,
ten thousand sources of pleasure are unsealed,
ten thousand refreshing joys spread over my heart,
crowding into every moment of happiness.
I bless thee for the soul thou hast created,
for adorning it, sanctifying it,
though it is fixed in barren soil;
for the body thou hast given me,
for preserving its strength and vigour,
for providing senses to enjoy delights,
for the ease and freedom of my limbs,
for hands, eyes, ears that do thy bidding;
for thy royal bounty providing my daily support,
for a full table and overflowing cup,
for appetite, taste, sweetness,
for social joys of relatives and friends,
for ability to serve others,
for a heart that feels sorrows and necessities,
for a mind to care for my fellow-men,
for opportunities of spreading happiness around,
for loved ones in the joys of heaven,
for my own expectation of seeing thee clearly.
I love thee above the powers of language
for what thou art to thy creatures.
Increase my love, O my God, through time
Sarah Kramer is the Digital Content Specialist at the Alliance Defending Freedom