I have often said that Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. Now do not get me wrong, I am a Christmas guy and definitely an Easter person and I understand the significance of these holidays to our Christian faith. It is hard to beat the Christmas story of God becoming man and being laid in a humble manger or the resurrection of Jesus after his crucifixion and the gift of eternal life to all who believe. All of that is hard to compare with a turkey dinner, no matter how good it is.
What I love is that Thanksgiving is a time to gather around a table, as family, as old or new friends, perhaps as co-workers, and share each other’s company. There are no wrapped presents or Easter eggs, just good food and fellowship. I always think, we should do this more often.
I am not saying there are not challenges, like long lines at the grocery store check-out, picked over turkeys or canned cranberry shortages. But my wife, Cary, and I always remind ourselves that these are problems that we really should not worry about.
For the people who come to our Ministry Outreach Center for food boxes, or those 2,500 families who come to our Thanksgiving Banquet in a Box give away at Empower Field the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, these issues are not their concern. They are just grateful for the opportunity to have food, to be greeted warmly by our staff and volunteers without judgement and to be able to have the items necessary to prepare a Thanksgiving meal, no matter what their celebration might look like.
- Christmas is about a promise fulfilled with the coming of our savior.
- Easter is about the incredible grace we have been shown through Jesus’ sacrifice.
- Thanksgiving is about being grateful.
I hope you will take a moment this Thanksgiving, when you are gathered around your table with those you love, to be grateful for God’s love and for your family and friends. I know that the people who come to our door for food and for hope are grateful for you, and so am I. As Denver Rescue Mission approaches our 130th year of service to vulnerable members of our community, we know we could not do this ministry without you.
Brad Meuli has been President/CEO at the Mission since 2001. Brad joined the Mission after a 17-year career in banking. Previous to his staff position he served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors. Read his full bio.
This post is part of November’s Changing Lives Newsletter. This month, you’ll learn about the ways your donations are providing Thanksgiving meals to people throughout Denver.