“I am Thankful for _____”

Trekking in Faith (2018)

1 Chronicles 16:34: Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; his love endures forever.

Last night, parents of our school in Nocatee, FL  gathered for a Thanksgiving Showcase: our first school event to attend with our child being a Kindergartener.

The event was adorable, with children dressed in homemade costumes as pilgrims, turkeys and other Thanksgiving-festive figures. Each class stood on the stage and sang two rehearsed Thanksgiving songs, mostly about stuffing their mouths with turkey and pie.

But the best part was to follow: each child took a turn on the microphone sharing what they were thankful for.

The responses ranged from family-related thankfulness, from saying “I’m thankful for my mom, my dad, my sister or brother. My grandma, my grandpop, my cousins”, and each time the audience cooed with delight.

Each parent seemed to take a deep breath in and then – ahhh – out after their child answered something adorable. It was so cute!

Other adorable responses occurred from “I am thankful for unicorns” to “I am thankful for my toys and games”. But when Landon received the microphone, his response was simple, “I’m thankful for our dog, Warrior”.

My husband and I looked at each other and laughed. Warrior, our rescue dog who moved in mid-May, is quite a handful. He steals and destroys items daily. He likely never lived in a home, never was loved, never had a reliable source of food so he’s stand-offish and awkward. If he’s underexercised, he pulls on our clothing or jumps up and eats the food we were working hard on preparing. If he’s bored, he’ll eat your shoes.

He’s thankful for that?!

And it put a huge smile on our face because his simple answer painted a picture of goodness after grief. Just nine days prior to Warrior taking over our home, we lost our first pet, Jersey, to a sudden case of jaw cancer.

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Landon was thankful for Warrior, but it made us remember what we were thankful for this Thanksgiving holiday. We, as a family, are thankful for the ability to have a new dog, to fill our home with a new (energetic) life, to have our home filled with memories of Jersey, to create new pictures with Warrior in them and to stop what we’re doing, like right now typing this blog post, because Warrior is destroying something upstairs as we speak.

Have you experienced a loss, maybe of even a greater proportion this holiday season? This will be the first Christmas in nine years that Jersey won’t receive a bucket of tennis balls nor will she fall asleep by our feet with us as we watch Four Christmases together.

But, we are thankful. Thankful for Warrior and thankful that we have a new life (literally and figuratively) that we get to be thankful for.

“I am thankful for Warrior, too”

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xo, The Jameses

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