Gratitude – and True Thanksgiving

Date posted: Wednesday 01 November 2017

“If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.” ― Meister Eckhart


November is here and it is safe to say that all congregations gather for some sort of Thanksgiving celebration, either alone or in community celebrations with other people of faith. Many of our churches also use November as a special focus for a special ingathering of items to share with local food shelves. This serves to help those who are living with hunger and lack of abundance while also making the givers aware of how much they have to share.


Those of us who have been privileged to visit and spend time with God’s children in a part of the world that we consider to be impoverished, quickly learned that our idea of “enough” is not the same as theirs. I honestly have not experienced hospitality and generosity as I did in Tanzania, Kenya, Bolivia and Peru. People of faith in those communities understood well that gratitude, especially gratitude to God, turns what you have into enough for you - - and to share.


What moves those of us in Minnesota congregations to give thanks? What motivates us to share with others? As Lutheran Christians, we understand and believe that everything we have is a gift from God. Nothing we have is “ours”, nor did we earn it entirely by ourselves. We respond to our God with gratitude and true thanksgiving. Every season should be one of gratitude and true thanksgiving but we can rejoice when November arrives to remind us of that!


Vernita Kennen