October, former procrastinators, is glorious – colorful trees, clear skies and brisk air. These, we know, give way to bare branches and gray skies of November. But I like November. Home is cozy and Thanksgiving Day brings people together in a way that’s usually simpler than Christmas. This year I want to be mindful early on and make it a whole month of gratitude. When I put off that focus, I can easily plop down at the celebration table hurried, harried, and flour-dusted and suddenly think, “Oh, yeah. I’m supposed to be grateful now.” So I’m setting the tone early in my own heart. Will you join me?
Fond memories of Thanksgivings past make me smile. Setting the table with my grandmother’s china – which we of the third generation still use, singing with cousins while washing dishes, going early to the community church service.
The hymn below was one we sang. Rereading it now, I see more than I noticed before. These words can remind us all month of the immense gratitude and joy we can have as followers of Christ. We are the harvest, and we are designed to co-labor with the Lord of the Harvest.
Come, Ye Thankful People, Come
Come, ye thankful people, come, raise the song of harvest home:
all is safely gathered in, ere the winter storms begin;
God, our Maker, doth provide for our wants to be supplied:
come to God’s own temple come, raise the song of harvest home.
All the world is God’s own field, fruit unto his praise to yield;
wheat and tares together sown, unto joy or sorrow grown:
First the blade, and then the ear, then the full corn shall appear:
Lord of harvest, grant that we wholesome grain and pure may be.
For the Lord our God shall come, and shall take his harvest home;
From his field shall in that day all offenses purge away;
Give his angels charge at last in the fire the tares to cast,
But the fruitful ears to store in his garner evermore.
Even so, Lord, quickly come to thy final harvest home;
Gather thou thy people in, free from sorrow, free from sin;
There forever purified, in thy presence to abide:
Come, with all thine angels, come raise the glorious harvest home.
Remember to research and vote this week. That’s something to be grateful for. Being salt and light is one way to co-labor with the Lord.
What specific gratitude will you focus on this week?