Finding God on Gannon’s campus: Holiday season provides perfect time for gratitude and joy

Nov 28 • Finding God on Gannon's Campus, Top Stories • 241

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It is the most wonderful time of the year. The holiday spirit sprinkles the air with joy and a time of giving.
But before Christmas truly hits us full-speed, I like to reflect on a truly underrated holiday: Thanksgiving.
As a young girl, I never liked the holiday other than watching the parade.
My taste buds did not appreciate the food yet and I remember always being stuck at the kids table.
Now, I have learned to love it. More than anything, I find joy in the simplicity of the day.
Families gather and feast with football on the TV and conversations abound.
This was the first year without an incredibly special member of our family. My grandmother passed away in January and as my dad prayed over the meal, the missing presence was felt by all of us.
She was the one with the plan for the kids table and the one who honestly made us all go around and say what we are thankful for.
And now that I am getting older, my adult self is the one who is trying to figure out what everyone is thankful for.
While Christmas is the time to celebrate Jesus’ birth, this holiday seems to show the spirit of love and gratitude that God desires for us.
He would love nothing more than for everyone to set aside time to feast and be merry with each other.
In fact, I think God would be a fan of this holiday much more than the craziness of Christmas that has been commercialized far beyond its origins.
The proclamation of this holiday was one of healing and finding peace.
President Abraham Lincoln’s words show just that.
“…to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.”
The spirit of the season is one of love.
We trade arguments for more turkey slices and complaints for another slice of pumpkin pie.
One day is not enough to find the immense sense of gratitude that I have for the blessings in my life.
And I know that other family members feel the same way.
As an individual of faith, I find that this holiday is exactly what I need to remember the basics of living a Christian life.
It takes a community, joy and gratitude to keep going in life.
As students ventured home for the holidays, you could sense the longing to be with loved ones.
Whenever I ask friends how their breaks were, they always give me a big smile before talking about the life-giving moments that it brought.
So, may this time continue to change our mindset throughout the rest of the year.
May we be merry in the company of loved ones and find all the beautiful moments that we are thankful for.
He is truly the reason for the season and the love is evident for all.

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