{countdown to thanks} pretending grace

Tomorrow we will gather around tables everywhere.
Relationships fill the seats and history will continue to be written. 

What can we give?
When I think about giving thanks for relationships,
 my heart quickly rushes to how
forgiveness must be present 
to celebrate together.  
To really celebrate together.
Can we be real?
I wonder how much pretending will go on Thursday?
I wonder if there will be grudges,
 or hurt feelings set aside for the sake of keeping  the peace?
Forgiveness removes unattainable expectations of perfection.

Can we offer forgiveness?
I wonder if there will be reconciliation and healing in friendship?
 I wonder how many families will celebrate
one who has been away, but now found. 
The soul that is the recipient
 of grace can breathe deeply. 

Can we extend grace?
Maybe in the celebrating,
there will be thanks given
 for the recovery of an addiction. 
Hope was lost but it is returning.
Reconciliation releases pride and anchored down bitterness
giving way to us realizing our very own battles.

Can we cheer?!
We all know that gathering creates incredible memories.
That honey glazed ham.
 Those potatoes mashed to perfection.
 The long lasting leftover buffet.
Delicious desserts piled on top of layers of feast. 
While we celebrate, 
let's brake our time down
 into moments and REALLY give thanks.

 Because we have the hope of Jesus around our table,
 we have the sweet ability to...

be real
offer forgiveness
extend grace
and cheer
with those gathered around!
Our days are numbered.
This is a week to take captive.
To live with purpose. 
A time to finally...
step up
reach out
and settle it
because you've been given
 these days to accomplish much...
for Him alone. 

Blessings over and around your table this week.
May your time count with each other.
Let the history of relationships passed down  be far
greater than any recipe you serve.