Let every prayer of ours, then, be accompanied with thanksgiving. And we are commanded to pray for our neighbors, not only the faithful, but the unbelieving also. For this reason God has given us a definite form of prayer, that we might ask for nothing human, nothing worldly, and that you that are faithful know what you ought to pray for. John Chrysostom - Homily on St. Timothy
For Americans this is a day of Thanksgiving, a day when families come together. For many, there are children this moment sitting in front of the televisions watching the Thanksgiving Day parades. And shortly, their fathers, uncles, and others will gather around the same televisions to watch the first of the day’s football games. Mothers, grandmothers, aunts are rushing around the kitchens making sure that the turkey is roasted just right, that there are plenty of mashed potatoes, stuffing, homemade bread, and lots of other goodies.
But we should all remember that it is first of all a day of thanksgiving. And I ask you in your prayers to remember and keep in your hearts all those who do not have the abundance that many do, and those who will not be able to be with their families.
I seem to be remembering that old song “Over the hills and through the dales, to grandmother’s house we go...” So in a little while I will climb in my car and drive to my mother’s house to discover what mouth watering things she has prepared for today. For those of you who remember, she is the one who makes that awesome soup for after Sunday’s liturgy. And I am sure that today’s feast will be awesome.
But it will only be her and me. Anyone who has no place to go today, you’re invited to join us. Today will be a day of telephone calls. First there is our daughter in Washington state with her mother, celebrating but also whiling for our son-in-law to return from his third deployment. Like so many other service members families, they will be praying for their love ones who are in harms way, and asking God to keep them save. Next there will be a telephone call to our other son-in-law who waits at home while our daughter, his wife, completes Navy OCS training. There will be no telephone to her or from her because calls are not permitted during the training. Our family will have a day apart in different parts of America and the world.
I am sure that I will over eat. But I will also remember that there are many who will have no more today than any other day. Today will be just another day or hunger and cold. So I will be making several other telephone calls for them. And those calls we can all make. Please make those calls yourself. Take more than a moment, set quietly, and make a long call to God. Pray for all those who have very little to be thankful for. And also pray that we can know how to be an active participant in making a difference in all their lives. Also, pray for those who are not able to be with their families today because thy are serving their country.
You are all in my prayers, today and always,