"Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words." - St. Francis of Assisi

Sunday, November 18, 2012

How do you just say thanks?

  How does one write a column about Thanksgiving? There just are not enough words, or at least the correct words, to say all that I feel…all that I am thankful for. However, it is late at night, the house is quiet and the thoughts begin to run through my mind, so I thought I’d share what I can.

  I’m thankful for my country. The United States of America. I’m thankful for the freedoms we have and the diversity of our communities. Even though we tend to get a little ugly during elections, our system still works. I’m thankful for my freedom of speech. I have the freedom to write a column in any newspaper in this country proclaiming that I have a faith in God, as does anyone else have the right to say that they don’t have the same faith. Or that their faith is in a different deity. That’s a good thing. I’m thankful that in time of disaster, that we see Americans helping Americans without a thought. During the recent hurricane in the northeast part of the country, people, not counting agencies, but just ordinary people came from all over to help their fellow Americans dig out and begin life again. And it continues.

  I’m thankful for our military, past, present and future. Men and women who believe in our country so much that they are willing to put themselves in harm’s way to protect what America stands for and believes in. Hoo-ah! Along with the military, I’m thankful for our police, fireman and educators.

  I’m thankful to be a born and bred southerner boy. A Georgian from McDonough in Henry County. This is a good county with good people from all walks of life and cultures. Even though we hate to see growth and changes come, once the construction ends and the traffic eases off, it is still the best place to live. Where else can you buy tomatoes in a drugstore, have a platform to just sit and watch trains pass, a major motor speedway, zombie parades to dance in the City’s Square and, like it or not, lots of ghosts in surrounding buildings to watch us as we work and play?

  I’m thankful for The Henry County Times family. Not just Mickie, John, Nick, Melissa, Seth, Renee and Tina who put so much time and effort into producing the best newspaper possible, but I’m thankful for all my fellow columnists who give us humor, things to ponder and remember, spiritual things to dwell on, books to read, plants to grow and on and on.

  Especially, I’m thankful for my family. My mom and dad who raised me to be a good Christian and encouraged me as my gifts for music and writing began to emerge. My grandma who took me to the Atlanta Symphony as often as she could to make sure I was exposed to the culture of the classics. I’m thankful for my sister and brother who have tolerated me as a big brother for, oh, so many years. I only recall a couple times that they threatened to adopt me out somewhere. I’m thankful that at this point in life that I can share a home with my mother and brother. And it is a good thing.

  Finally, I’m thankful for my relationship with God. It defines who I am. I know that He is the one who has blessed me with all that I have, both that listed above and that in my heart. May I always be a vessel for Him.

  As I close, I wish all of you in my Henry County family a truly thankful Thanksgiving and hope that you can gather during this holiday season with those you love and hold dear.