Thursday, November 24, 2011

Jess's thoughts on Grace, Gambling and Gobble Gobble

So once again, my well-laid plans to sleep in were thwarted by a feline who is under the false impression that he needs to make sure we know when the sun is about to come up. So as to ensure that the "stupendous Chef of all things Thanksgiving" wakes well rested, I took the bullet and tended to the one known as Maximus... or when annoyed with him... Maxine.

Those morning hours, when the house is still asleep, are some of my favorites. The stillness is rare. I rather enjoy it. I have found myself contemplative in the quietness this morning... feeling the fullness of the day ahead. Soon these rooms will fill with aromas from the culinary master I married some 20 years ago... sleepy young men will pry themselves from their beds just in time for a little lunch... my husband and sister will bicker in the kitchen over whether the cranberry relish needs more sugar... Grandma will join us later with the holy grail of desserts - raisin squares... the faithful canine will sit dutifully, prepared to clean up the floors the moment anything decends upon them... perhaps a family foosball tournament will ensue and if we're lucky, a family poker game will add a little redneck gambling to our Turkey day.

An awareness of the bounty that fills my life emerges... not because it's Thanksgiving, but because it's Thursday and my life is full of good things and people I love. Don't get me wrong... some things in my life are pretty messy. Living in this home of ours requires a boatload of grace, patience and forgiveness... unfortunately, we aren't always careful with each other. We are impatient, sarcastic, selfish and sometimes just mean. I think God's idea of family was to give us a place to just be who we are. To be our messy, transparent selves... and still be loved by people who will speak the truth to us and give us needed perspectives on the parts of ourselves we can't see so clearly. After all, we are all on our own journey of discovering who we are and who we want to become.

We come and go from this place every day, each to our own worlds that are both kind and cruel. It is my hope that our home is also a soft place to fall when life has opened a can of whoop ass on us... a place where we can love and be loved, however imperfectly... a place we can take risks, breathe deeply, laugh loudly and find rest when we are weary.
So today, join me in inviting grace to be a guest at your Thanksgiving table. Hug those imperfect people you love and forgive the ones who piss you off... and feel free to steal our tradition and add gambling to your Thanksgiving tradition!

(It's probably time to wrap this up anyway... finding it hard to concentrate with Scott and Julie already bickering in the kitchen - this time both in the voice of Gloria from "Modern Family".)

Happy Thanksgiving~

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