Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving: A Rainbow Blessing

"You open your hand and satisfy the needs of every living being . . ."

--Birchat ha-Mazon (Blessing After Food)

This morning, as we were preparing for our Thanksgiving Dinner, we looked out and saw this bright rainbow over Rancho Verde. The rainbow came at the beginning of the approaching storm. It is a reminder that storms do come in our lives, but even in the midst of them there is beauty and blessing. As the storm approaches, we give thanks to the Creator who has blessed us with the strength and resolve to see each other through.

The rainbow is a reminder of our blessings, for in the Southwest, at least, rain is always a blessing! There are so many blessings that we have to be thankful for this year and all years, and it is our joy to share those blessings with family and friends, near and far. Our thanks extend to all of those who share this great land with us, and those who protect it with their unceasing vigilance. They are far from home, on the seas and at the borders, and our thoughts go out to them, too.

We are thankful for those who grow the grain, harvest the crops, and bring our food to us. By the work of their hands, we have bread to eat. We are thankful, too, to all of those bright minds whose innovations have improved our lives, and lengthened them, and we are thankful for the strength to share our work with all of them.

Thanksgiving is the quintessential American holiday: a holiday on which productive people rejoice in the plenty that they have made, and give thanks for the riches they have earned.
And for me, the quintessential song for Thanksgiving is Woody Guthrie's Pastures of Plenty:

"Green pastures of plenty from dry desert ground,
From the Grand Coulee dam where the waters run down . . .
My land I'll defend with my life if it be,
For the Patures of Plenty must always be free . . .

Now, the rain is turning to snow. The turkey is browning in the oven, and the house smells of pumpkins roasting, and spices for the cider. We are warm, dry and safe. We have each other, and we each wake up every morning with joy in our hearts and work that needs doing.

It is our prayer that all of you have the same and do the same!

L'chaim! To Life!

Happy Thanksgiving!


christinemm said...

Wonderful post.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! :-) Happy Thanksgiving!