Hands-down, Thanksgiving is the best day of the year for the American family.
Thanksgiving touches many of the things we love most.
Thinks like time off work, hanging out with family, watching endless football and eating delicious food. These have to be in the top five greatest pleasures for Americans.
At our house, we value waking up together, sharing a late breakfast, tuning in to the Macy's Day Thanksgiving Parade and heading off to the in-laws for a turkey meal with all the trimmings.
Americans eat over 50 million turkeys at Thanksgiving.
The Harris Poll survey showed:
—74% of the people surveyed say they want to have their Thanksgiving meal in a home, not in a restaurant.
—14% of Americans admit to serving a store-bought pie and passing it off as homemade on Thanksgiving.
—30% of Americans will include a dish from another culture, including things like kimchi, enchiladas or ceviche.
—73% of people say having leftovers is the best part of hosting Thanksgiving dinner.
—46% of people who purchased pies for Thanksgiving bought pumpkin pie.
The Harris Poll survey also found that 77% of people love saving holiday meal leftovers, while 18% of Baby Boomers and 32% of Millennials say they do not store the leftovers.
All of this is a part of Thanksgiving. But the greatest part of Thanksgiving is that it reminds us to give thanks to God who gives us awesome things to thank Him for.
As we reflect on the joy of Thanksgiving, we should practice "giving thanks" more often.
The Scriptures encourage us with this: "In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you" (1 Thess. 5:18).
Notice the Scripture says to be grateful "in" all circumstances, not "for" all circumstances. That's another level for sure.
If the weather is conducive, a family football game is on the agenda. We team off in a large backyard and go all in. Tons of fun for sure.
The younger athletes make the best plays, and the old men do most of the quarterback work. We follow the football game with dominoes. We should call it "Family Feud."
The competition begins mild and intensifies as the game continues. The slurs and insults increase as the day turns to night. It's just as entertaining to watch the domino game as it is to play.
The real purpose is to give thanks. Giving thanks is healthy to the soul.
Researchers asked participants to smile while thinking of something specific they're grateful for. They found that this consistently stimulated mental activity associated with positive feelings and emotions.
Giving thanks is just good for you, all the way around. The true secret to being grateful is no secret at all. You choose to be grateful.Then you do it again and again and again.
As we practice "giving thanks" every day, maybe we call it "Thanks-living" rather than Thanksgiving!
I think that's a great idea.
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