It’s several days before Thanksgiving and we are getting ready for the holiday along with millions of other people around the country. Janet and I have been married for 41 years and since that first Thanksgiving, I have made the turkey based on a recipe used by my mother and her mother before her. Admittedly it is “old school” but I haven’t ever found a better way to cook turkey and at this late date, the preparation for the day is as important as the taste of the food and the experience we share as a family. In other words, I don’t even know if I am open to the idea of changing how we cook the bird each year.
And even if I was open to a change, I think the kids would protest. They love the tradition and the dependable taste year after year. Sure – it’s work, but once a year is still something that I can manage for the best meal we share as a family. Andrew has expressed interest in eventually carrying on the tradition. Several years ago, he started working with me to learn the ropes of preparation and this year is the 3rd year of his internship. I think we both realize that sometime down the road, he will be the one who carries on the family tradition. Maybe he will decide to change the way things are done – but something tells me that he will stay true to the history of our family.
Which brings up one change we have this year that is a “first.” And that is that Janet and I spent time this past week-end putting up a Christmas tree. Now this may not sound like a big deal, but to us it was huge. You see, Janet and I believe that we should not start preparing for a future holiday before the next one up is complete. So, we have never put up Christmas before the week-end after Thanksgiving. But this year, several things conspired against us.
For starters, when we put away the decorations last year, we knew it was our last Christmas in the old place and we haven’t been through a holiday season yet in our new home. So, we have no idea where different things will be going. But we do know that it will take longer to put everything up. Aside from all that, the kids are all older and they have their own lives to live and holidays to prepare for. So we can’t depend on them to help us put up decorations and since Christmas is Janet’s favorite holiday, she hates to minimize what we do in the way of ornaments and the transformation of the house.
So, reluctantly, we started this past week-end and I, for one, am enjoying the process much more than in the past when time was of the essence and we were always in a hurry to get things done. Not so this year. We are taking our time and making the most of the opportunity.
The verse for this evening speaks to biblical festivals. We are told, by Hosea, in Hos. 9:5, “What will you do on the day of your appointed feasts, on the festival days of the LORD?” That’s a great question for all of us. Because it is important to remember the reason that we celebrate the various events each year. And Christmas, along with Easter, are two of the really important ones. My encouragement this evening is that God wants us to remember the reason for the season. It is the celebration of the birth of the Savior of the world. My prayer is that you kick back a little, enjoy the season and not fret too much when necessity requires a change in the way you do things. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…