Thanksgiving is truly one of my very favorite holidays!
Simply because Thanksgiving is a bit understated, I think. Other than craft and grocery stores, there's not a push to shop til you drop. Gifts are not an expectation, and decorating is fairly minimal.
With far less stress and expectation surrounding the Thanksgiving Day festivities, I feel free to actually celebrate my many blessings - counting them one by one. Over the years, I've prayed for opportunities and creative expressions through which to Give Thanks, and so I thought I would share a few.
1. Send handwritten notes.
I buy note cards (blank on the inside) and make a list of people who have been involved in my life over the past year. I write each one a personal note thanking them for the specific (positive) impact they've had on my life.
My list purposely includes people who are friends as well as those with whom I may not have the best relationship. I've learned, through obedience in this practice, there is at least one thing each and every person has contributed to my life in a positive way...friend or not.
2. Thankful Business Cards
Select a "thankful" Scripture, type it in an attractive font and print on business cards. Hand "thankful" cards out to anyone, anywhere. I've handed them out to co-workers and neighbors in the past. I'll be expanding distribution this year by having them available in my car or purse to hand out in stores, at the gas station, dry cleaners, etc...
The sky's the limit...be creative!
3. Treat Someone to Lunch
Invite someone to share a meal out or in your own home. Ask the LORD to highlight someone for whom you might show appreciation by breaking bread together. Perhaps a new friendship will be birthed!
4. Provide Treats to Service Providers
This is one of my favorites. Leave a bottled drink and some cookies or a candy on top of your trash dumpster on trash pick up day with a little note - "Thank you for hauling my trash away every week!" Leave a treat in your mailbox with a note for the mail carrier.
I love to peek out the window and catch the surprised expression on the person's face when they find their treat and read a "thank you!". Priceless!!
5. Send a "Thankful for You" Card From Your Pet
We typically send a Thank You card to our vet's office from our two terriers - Liberty and Nole. Usually a picture is included with words of appreciation for their tremendous care and patience!
A card could also be sent to your pet's groomer.
6. Add a Little Extra
During the month of November, I add a little extra tip for service providers, such as waiters/waitresses, my hair stylist and nail technician. The additional "I'm thankful for you!" is very well received by all.
Perhaps an extra tip is not possible within your budget. Handwritten notes cost very little and mean a great deal!
7. Random Acts of Kindness
Look for opportunities to bless someone with random acts of kindness, especially the elderly, military personnel and clergy. Put a neighbor's trash dumpster away one day, pick up trash in your neighborhood while walking your dog, mow the pastor's grass or trim bushes (with permission of course). Be on the look out and pray for opportunity...be a blessing!
I've always been one to cheer the underdog, and it seems this national day (set aside for counting our blessings) has become somewhat of a Charlie Brown of the holiday season; which makes me appreciate it all the more!
In what ways have you expressed your thanks? Would you share your ideas? I'd love it if you would.
And I pray you feel inspired to say "Thank You" with creativity and heart all the way through Thanksgiving Day and beyond...
Blessings of GREATEST JOY on your amazing adventure journey with Jesus!