No Essay

No Essay to Submit but here is how I feel about Thanksgiving.

I'm finally getting to the point in this busy day to sit back and reflect on all that has happened. My wife Jill is the joy of my life and I can't frame the words to describe how much she means to me. Words of thanks fail. My son is stationed in the Navy in Hawaii with his wife and 4 month old baby (who I haven't seen yet) and my daughter lives in Chicago, expecting their first child in February. Another year went by without seeing any of them. My son Micah has served in Afghanistan twice. He has made it home safe and sound so far and I'm grateful beyond words that he is safe. We will see him next week when he comes for a visit. In February, he will be moving to California with Eve and Jack to a base about 3 hours away from us. That's the first time I'll meet my grandson. I'm very thankful that of all the places in the world that that the Navy could have sent him, they chose to send him so close. God does answer prayer.
Today our house was full of people, some traveled 3 hours, others only a short distance. There was the traditional food (almost one whole pie per person!), a huge turkey that was finished to perfection--all the fixin's. Hours later, I'm still stuffed. I'm thankful that everyone was here and had a good time.
I grew up in a very secular home. Thanksgiving was only a holiday when we had a small reunion with family members and ate too much of the best foods. My parents were always glad to get a few days off work as we were glad to get a few days off school--the usual stuff. But over the years it has changed for me to the more foundational traditions of the day. I am an ordained chaplain and I volunteer with many different groups to help those who are in need. Observing what some others are experiencing on Thanksgiving gives a completely different perspective.
We go to the nursing homes where many have been abandoned and forgotten by their familes who are too busy to see them. The state...