Giving Thanks

I can’t head into this Thanksgiving weekend without dropping a few words on what I’m grateful for.

I honestly try to be thankful for things all year round, but Thanksgiving just seems to bring it out of me.

I am so grateful for a life full of blessings, and if I sit back and truly consider things, there is simply nothing I could legitimately complain about.

I’m grateful for my wife, Aimie – and for the love that she shows me day in and day out, her incredible ability to flex around my stupidity and childishness and for the amazing mom she is to my kids.

I am thankful for the children we have been blessed with. Abigail, Amalie and Andon have completed us, and  every time one of them looks up at me and calls me “Daddy”, I can’t help but let go of every single thing that might be trying to bother me. I’m even grateful for the challenges they bring us, for they make us stronger as a couple and more experienced as parents.

I’m thankful for my health. My family and I have been spared major health hurdles to date, and even though that could change any day, I am thankful for a relatively trouble-free year. In light of a very recent discovery of cancer in my brother, it highlights what we all have to be thankful for, and what we are focusing on as a family in terms of support and prayer.

The fact that we live in a country where we are free to believe what we want, free to practice our religion (or not), free to worship as we see fit (or not) and free to do as we want without a fear of persecution makes me very thankful. I’m also thankful there is peace in our country. Many people have never known a day without war, fighting and strife. They can’t even imagine walking down their street without being in danger. Think about how good we have it here.

I am also grateful that I never have to go hungry or thirsty a day in my life, and considering there are people in my very own city that don’t have this luxury, it makes me realize even more how good I have it, and that it is my duty to share with those less fortunate than I am. A helping hand to those in need is all it takes some days, and it is the least we can offer.

I am incredibly thankful for my extended family. My parents, my wife’s parents, our siblings and their kids. They are all amazing people, and being a close-knit family, year in and year out, is something to be very grateful for. Not every family can say this, and we are glad we can. We also realize that this needs to be nurtured and respected, to ensure this continues. Too many families only gather at each others’ funerals, and I never want to be one of them.

And finally, I am thankful for my friends. I have a small number of very close friends, but a large number of people that I consider true friends. They are all people I know I can count on. They are all people that bring something wonderful into my life, whether it is a smile, an out and out guffaw, a tear, a shoulder when I need one, help with something or other, and on and on. Thanks for being there for me, friends. You truly make each day a brighter one, and I wouldn’t want to go through life without you.

There are many, many more things I could list, and maybe one day, I will. I will be spending some time with family and friends this weekend, and I will be recounting our daily blessings and what we have in our lives with my wife and kids. I hope you’ll do the same.

“In everything, give thanks.”   1. Thess. 5:18

Happy Thanksgiving, friend!

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