Thanksgiving with my family is probably like so many others. A feast fit for a king. We slave away for hours in preparation for this feast and devour it in a matter of minutes. While that seems somewhat illogical, it is SO worth it. Over the years the people around the table have changed slightly, some new additions, some who find themselves distanced by too many miles and some who can’t make it due to obligations to their spouses families. However, even though we have been playing musical chairs somewhat lately, there are two things that are never compromised on that last Thursday in November. 1. The pies. 2. Our tradition to go around the table and say what we were thankful for.
It was no different this year as my Granny, my mother and I spent the afternoon making the pies everyone counts on devouring shortly after the meal. Every year we make a pecan, a pumpkin and as many chocolate pies as I can convince my grandmother to make. They are like manna from heaven. Literally. You see, my grandmother’s recipe for chocolate pie is unlike any other. It’s creamy, rich and delectable beyond words. It also takes hours to make!
After we had all gluttonously filled our plates, we started the second Thanksgiving tradition. Giving thanks. Around the table we went, sharing thoughts on how God had blessed the year and declaring gratitude. It never fails, my Granny makes me cry. This year however, the one that made me cry was my Papa. The Herd Bull. Usually the pillar of strength in the family and the one cracking all the jokes, he sat at the head of the table. Right in the midst of chemotherapy he was a little weaker than normal…but he was there. And we were thankful. “I am thankful for your prayers he said. Thankful that I am here and still the Herd Bull of this family. Thankful that even in the midst of things like this ‘little trial,’ God is in control. He’s in control of the good and the bad. If we trust in Him, He will sustain us.” Tears flowed down all of our cheeks as we saw this man, the patriarch of our family, so confidently trusting the Lord even in the midst of trial. As we sat there thankfully crying together, I was so grateful for the family I have. Later, I began to mull over the wonderful blessing that is my family. Why are we so blessed? And then it occurred to me that my family is like those pies. The recipes are special and unlike any other. They are precious and worth preserving. Our family recipe is the same and the secret ingredient is just like my Papa said. A dependence upon God who sustains us.
Every year I am in charge of the pecan pie. This is not because I make a particularly delicious one but because my slightly OCD perfectionist self loves to design the top. Yes, I know it’s weird but it’s me. Sometimes its an OU made out of pecans and sometimes it’s just a beautiful design. I make sure everyone admires it and then…they eat it like any other pie. Someday maybe I’ll learn my lesson. Maybe.