Sometimes the memory fails.
 
Three elderly ladies were discussing the problems with getting older.  One said, “Sometimes I find myself standing in front of the refrigerator with a jar of mayonnaise in my hand and I can’t remember if I was taking it out or putting it in.” 
 
The second lady said, “Yea, sometimes I will find myself on the landing of the stairs and I can’t remember whether I was on my way up or on my way down.” 
 
The third lady responded with, “Well, I’m glad I don’t have those problems, knock on wood.  Oh, that’s the door.  I’ll get it.”
 
Do you ever feel like you are suffering from amnesia and déjà vu at the same time?  Yeah, you think you have forgotten this before.
 
During this difficult time of being cooped up, I’m thinking that remembering to give thanks will help us all through it.  
 
Mom taught me to give thanks because it’s just what we ought to do. Once you learn it, it’s kind of like Kudzu—it grows on you.  Just a little bit and it spreads all over your life.  Have you ever just said thanks for peanut butter, milk, books, good eyes, electricity, running water, health care professionals, and the security of home?  Well, you ought to.
 
But everybody wasn’t raised the same.  We were eating at the Olive Garden in Douglasville a few years ago and had a nice young man waiting on us.  After he brought our drinks I said “Thank you.”  And after he brought our entrée, and each tea re- fill, and then our check, I said, “Thank you.”  I said it because mama taught me to.  
 
But not once did he say “You’re welcome.”  I was taught to day “You’re welcome” after someone says “Thank you.” 
 
Guess what he said?  “No problem.”  I think “No problem” equals “You’re welcome” to the younger generation.  I’ve noticed that most young people today say “No problem,” instead of “You’re welcome.”  I’m ok with that.
 
We could take it one step farther and give thanks, not only because we ought to, but because we want to.  I have a file in my desk that is called the “Feel Good File.”  In it are notes and letters I have gotten over the years, most of them say something like this: “Thank you for preaching dad’s funeral.”  “Thank you for this or that.”  The thoughtful people who wrote them to me did so because they wanted to. When I am having a bad day, a “Corona Crisis, I think I’m going crazy being cooped up all day kind of day”, I am intentionally going into that file, reading the notes, and giving thanks.  I want to. 
 
So, giving thanks because you ought to (mama taught me to), giving thanks because you want to is even better, but maybe we might offer thanks during this time of crisis because we can’t help ourselves. 
 
When God sends a blessing He usually wraps it in a person.  I can’t help myself thanking God for the people in my life, my kids and friends, and for people helping each other now when we need it most. It is so encouraging to see the goodness of people shining forth in so many beautiful ways.
 
Truthfully, there are days now when I am tempted to complain about what’s happening, but I must resist that temptation and turn to Doxology: “Praise God through whom all blessings flow.”
 
So, I’m going to give thanks, if I can only remember why!

~Pastor Steve

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