A time to be thankful

By Patrick Fisher

It's the week of Thanksgiving and I hope everyone is enjoying this holiday. Whether you're gathered around a table with a feast or in front of a TV with a football game, may it be with family or friends or both.

In many ways, I've always considered Thanksgiving to be about gatherings. I grew up with it being a time for extended families to come together and visit and renew the ties of family. For the adults in my family it was through conversations of what everybody was up to, what was happening in the town where they lived or sometimes the major stories in the state or the nation. The children would find ways to keep themselves busy, either by games, puzzles or playing outside if the weather was nice.

There was also a lot of laughter. I have many memories of my parents, grandparents and aunts and uncles laughing over stories. Some of them were from their childhood others were from something that happened just recently.

I was reminded lately how being thankful can change as you get older. A few weeks ago, I was visiting friends and I was having a late dinner. After saying a short prayer of thanks, I noticed my friends' young daughter watching me. We were the only two at the table and she asked what I just did. I explained I said grace. That brought another question and an explanation that grace is a prayer of being thankful.

I realize at her age, being thankful is something most children take for granted. While they realize it's nice to say thank you, they've yet to grasp the actual meaning behind the words.

This year, many of us understand what it means to be thankful for the things we have, a roof over our heads, food on the table and a means to provide them. It's something that hopefully gives us all a deeper appreciation of what it means to be thankful on this special day.

So, whether this finds you and you're family having turkey with all the trimmings at one huge table, or enjoying dessert after a day stuffed with football, Happy Thanksgiving.

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