The autumn months are, not creeping, but barreling, through, and Thanksgiving looms large, in spite of the mostly unseasonably warm weather.
It’s a wake-up call time for most teachers, as we realize how much we hoped to get covered first semester, and the reality of how much we probably did not get covered. Not sure how to fix that one; one always wants students to learn more than we have time for.
It’s a time for making sure that the firewood pile is ready for the winter, and adjusting it, if it is not. It is the good graces of our apple tree that got us through last, fairly mild winter. (It gave us lots of dead branches). Yes, last winter was mild; everyone seems to remember the few extremely cold days and forget the rest of the season, with above average temps.
It is, more than anything, a time for looking inward with gratitude and outward with hope. Thanksgiving tends to get run over, sandwiched as it is between the day when they want to sell kids lots of candy, and the day when they want to sell kids lots of toys.
“They,” of course, refers to retail marketing. Thanksgiving is primarily an adult holiday, with food focus on adult tables, adult activities like football being a concern, and the adult desire to reconnect with family and friends as a strong sub-theme.
What are you thankful for? I am sure that most of us, if we allow the list to take shape, will start it off with family members, particularly the spouse, I would hope. In the busyness of daily life, we too often take for granted the one who has stood by us, behind us, and sometimes gone in front of us. Clearing the way. If you are not blessed with a spouse like this, I am sorry, but if you are, show some gratitude.
Children. Constant source of thanksgiving, even when they are exasperating. Anybody who wants to join the laugh a day club, go find a little kid to hang out with. My granddaughter has been watching a lot of volleyball this fall, as we cheer the Lady Eagles to a possible championship. So the other day, as I was taking her to CCD, she piped up from the back seat” Okay, pretend you just picked me up from volleyball practice, and you’re taking me to CCD.” Guess she has a new set of heroes.
Well, there’s another source of thanksgiving- a granddaughter who is healthy enough to dream about being a high school volleyball player someday, and know that she’ll be healthy enough to do it, if she wants.
There are more, so many more, and I will spend next week’s column on some of those other aspects of gratitude. The students — I started this column off by mentioning how material always outruns time available — the students are their own whole cause for gratitude. More on that next week, and other joys of life.
Clyde Davis is a Presbyterian pastor and teacher at Clovis Christian High School. He can be contacted at: email@example.com