What does it mean to be “thankful”?
I know, it means having a distended stomach, and wondering if you will live until leftover sandwiches! Watching TV and playing like all the people in the house are not getting on your last nerve.
The truly simple and strangely absent definition is that “thankful” means what we do tomorrow.
Some people will return to risking everything they have to build a new business. Some will turn and continue to invest their fifth, twenty-sixth year or more into their marriage and family. Some will go back on patrol of our borders or in other countries. Many will go back to work in stores, hospitals, police and fire stations, governmental offices doing jobs we really don’t want to know about.
Thanksgiving and thankful go way beyond any specific emotion, ultimately to some form of courage or grit where I return to life, roll up our sleeves, and do what needs to be done, that has fallen to me. Glorious or mundane, courageous or grinding, I do what falls to me to do.
However tired, full, joyous, or achingly empty, it shows us all how ‘thankful’ you are and for what, really.