Prodigal Thanksgiving

Why the word ‘prodigal’ for this thanksgiving list? Well, I choose it because it means both ‘lavish and abundant’ as descriptive of the Father in the story entitled The Prodigal’s Son. The Father was extravagant and lavish in his dealings with his young son, giving him his fortune ahead of time and lavishing his riches on the son when he returned. The same story is sometimes entitled The Prodigal Son describing the son. In this instance the term ‘prodigal’ means ‘wayward, wasteful and a spend-thrift’. This one word encompasses two extremes in life: one life heaped with things to overflowing and one life bereft of anything, both from an extreme outpouring. One done in love, the other in foolishness. Life is like that. The same action can be good or bad. Most times I simply can’t call it, so…I am thankful for ALL. It’s like the story of the white horse.

I am thankful for:

1366 glitter and sparkles: I have glitter on my Christmas cards and a glitter snow globe at my work desk. The sparkle smooths out the stresses of the day. God knows the calming effect of glitter and He spreads it across the grass in frozen dew and snow temperate climates and in raindrops and sparkling seas everywhere.

1367 a small gathering of women who meet together weekly, intentionally, to grow in the Lord.

1368 seeing the fruits of devastation. “All things work together for good…”

1369 the snuggles of a little dog who cannot see me or hear me, but pushes deep down into my lap until he falls asleep.

1370 children who are making their ways in the world, giving of themselves as they do.

1371 good health care providers who really care for us.

1372 good co-workers at my job and the best boss I have ever had.

1373 a quiet Thanksgiving Day where I can have a wonderful meal with strangers and friends, sing (or not) around a piano with one who can play anything forever and being able to leave without bravato when my husband tires.

1374 winter and all the changes it brings. I like to change clothes, activities and celebrate the special holidays of winter.

1375 tea, especially a really hot brew on a cold, wintery day, and chai for something extra special. I’m thankful for honey, too!

1376 spices and the flavor they add to life.IMG_3194

1377 victory with my health insurance company and for all the people that helped me along the way: Holy Spirit Hospital’s Medical Records secretary, Barb; Holy Spirit Hospital lab administrator; Quest Labs in southern California and Liz Baldys, RN at Dr Baldys’ office for submitting each ‘next’ thing to the insurance appeal people, sometimes multiple times, to build the case for covering my husband’s medications.

1378 insurance in this day in the US when many insurance carriers are suspending coverage.

1379 Facebook, that allows me to keep in touch with friends so far away and those in town that there is just no time to see in person.

1380 red berries poking through fences, snow and hanging from trees. They brighten up a dreary landscape.

1381 Twisted Peppermint Bath and Body shower gel, lotions and liquid hand soap. It smells SO good!

1382 digital photography and being able to select 19 photos out of the hundreds I took of the grandkids this year and make a 2013 poster collage…ah, the memories.

1383 that Ann Voskamp’s One Thousand Gifts has gone viral. Thanksgiving can be found all over – in season and out. People are making lists and slowing down as they do. Some without even knowing about Ann. They just somehow know that a grateful heart is essential.

1384 heat. I notice it when I go upstairs in my house. The upstairs is so much warmer and I thank Him as I notice the change as I climb the stairs. It’s like the heat envelopes me and He is giving me a hug.

1385 justice for my sister this year.

1386 Abby’s finishing her Administrative Assistant course as she wraps up her internship.

1387 Joyce has a new place to live.

1388 stability. I know many with all kinds of mental health issues. Some suffer depression and some have anxiety attacks and some are losing their memories. I am praying strength for each one.

1389 support hose for my varicose veins that enable me to stand without pain.

1390 Russ’ grandmother’s rocking chair that is so very comfortable at the end of a long day.

1391 the conviction of Bible memorization. Four of us said all 10 verses that we learned at the last session of our Bible Study together. Here is my favorite from that group of verses: “No one has ever seen God, but if we love one another, God lives in us, and His love is made complete in us.” I John 4:12NIV The prize was either the One Thousand Gifts hardback book or a perpetual calendar of the same. Look at all those bird nests!


1392 victories in the lives of our church families: 1. A son, a lifetime away from the Lord, comes home and can not get enough of the Living Water. 2. A second son gets his PhD while his brother goes off to Liberty University as a Freshman. 3. An organic farmer who has plowed soil behind his team of horses for decades is diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that necessitates he learn to walk again and is regaining strength slowly struggling to walk with 2 crutches comes to the church Thanksgiving dinner for the first time. He says, “It is a new era.” 4. A family’s matriarch sees her cancer shrink while another family loses their patriarch-all trusting in the divine plan of a good God.

1393 a friend getting a job to the exact specificati0ns that he and his wife have been praying for: not to have to work on Sunday, use of a company car and phone and salary enough to cover their bills since she lost her job.

1394 a friend to walk with every Thursday morning.

1395 music that transcends words. Melodies situated at just the right time can unite a moment, express what everyone is feeling and take us to the Throne of Grace like nothing else.

1396 the years of teaching I had and now being able to watch former students take on the world for Christ.

1397 beautiful paper that makes my homemade cards look so professional.

1398 kids’ crafts online that help a grandmother be ‘awesome’, chuckle.

1399 grace that is greater than all my sin.

He is with me, thankfully,



3 comments on “Prodigal Thanksgiving

  1. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your beloveds, Dawn. So, so much to be thankful for. From glitter and paper and “awesome grandma” tools to insurance and jobs and a hot cuppa tea. The sweet and sorrowful, the heavy and up-lifting . . . love your giving thanks in all things.

  2. What a fun sit down and visit with you. My ladies all cancelled out coming today because of a treacherous freezing rain on the roads and sick babies and sooo I get to visit here. I first googled ‘Prodigal’ and was given the dessert was prodigal with whipping cream… I liked that!
    Then I worked through the story of the White Horse and cried all over again even though I have already done that last year!
    And then I smiled and rejoiced through your list. It was a very good visit and very good for my ears and my heart….
    I want to thank God for this amazing lady and friend He has brought into my life~
    blessings and grace abundant dear one

  3. Soooo good to see your name in my email and a link to a new post here! Missed you, dear friend. Yesterday I thought of you when I looked out the kitchen window and saw it falling all around: glitter!!! (Really) Rejoicing with you in your wonderful list.
    Blessings on your season of Immanuel in your year of Immanuel.

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