Thanks Giving

It seems fitting that, now that I’m finally getting around to starting a blog, it’s Thanksgiving time…and I am thankful for each of you!

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of year. It’s not just that I love the food. I do love turkey, stuffing, cranberries, sweet potatoes—and pumpkin.

Especially pumpkin.

Lately, in fact, it seems I have developed a pumpkin fixation. I just can’t seem to get enough—pumpkin muffins, pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie. And now our local supermarket bakery has the best pumpkin cream cheese cake. I’m hoping it’s seasonal—and will go away soon—because I seem to be losing control in this area!

My daughter Erika shares the same pumpkin obsession. (Do you think it could be hereditary?) But poor thing, she lives in Ireland, where they just don’t seem to “do pumpkin,” she tells me. Fortunately, she was recently in the States for a wedding and was able to get her pumpkin latte fix.

But the real reason I love Thanksgiving is not the food—honest. It’s the actual giving of thanks.

Of course, that’s what we should be doing every day of our lives—giving thanks. But somehow at this season (and I do think of it as a season, not just one day) I find myself wanting to be more intentional about thanking the people God has so graciously put into my life for what they mean to me. And, of course, thanking the God Who gave me these people.

These past two weeks have been two of the busiest weeks of my life. First, there was the videotaping of all 16 sessions of “Inside Out Parenting: A Mom’s Mission” in four and a half days (the new Mom To Mom curriculum, to be released by LifeWay in May 2008).

Did I ever have people to be thankful for in that week!

My family, my friends, and the Mom To Mom prayer team were praying me through from all over the country (and Ireland!). The Mom To Mom leadership team at Westbrook Church in Hartland, Wisconsin, where we filmed, was incredible. I wish you could have seen how they set up my “dressing room.” I wanted to move in and live there!

The LifeWay film crew was magnificent—each one so dedicated to honoring God through both excellence and Godly servant-hearts. And my husband Woody . . . I wish you could have seen the hilarious musical cards he gave me each day, complete with a Biblical message of encouragement from the life of Moses.

Then last week was the Womens’ Leadership Forum at LifeWay in Nashville. The whole Mom To Mom board was there. And we met so many wonderful women—both moms and leaders of moms—who shared with us their stories. What an encouragement it was to hear how God is working in and through Mom To Mom in so many different ways in different parts of the country.

In fact, if any of you reading this were there at Lifeway last week, I’d love for you to register on our forum and share some of your experiences. And if you weren’t there, we’d love to meet you via our Community Forum and hear what God is doing in your Mom to Mom.

Recently I came across Philippians 1:3 in The Message: “Every time you cross my mind, I break out in exclamations of praise to God…” And I realized how many people in my life cause me to “break out in exclamations of praise to God.” You moms are some of those people, because I get to see—and hear—how God is at work in your lives and families, in all the seasons of your life.

Speaking of seasons, may I invite you to join in my “season of thanks-giving,” even if you are reading this after the actual Turkey Day. Maybe a good place to start thanking would be right at home, perhaps with your husband and children.

Happy thanks giving!