Yesterday, peace on earth reigned as many of us gathered in our homes and gave thanks for the many blessings, our families and friends in our lives.
However, the madness started around midnight as people flocked to malls and stores everywhere attempting to snag the perfect gift, bargin or deal to impress those same family and friends. Why? What has seeped into the human psyche that a materialistic present will pacifiy their children or outshine anyone else's offering in this Advent season?
Although I understand the attraction and the draw of the prospect of Black Friday especially in these hard economic times, what I despise is the false advertising, the chaos and unfortunately in some cases, the death that has occured making this truly a dark time of the year.
During the Thanksgiving celebrations yesterday as I was entertaining a couple of my fellow Seminarian brothers and sisters with dinner that we had prepared, I received a text from a Pastor friend who had attended my childhood home congregation for services yesterday with that started with these words: "Your Mama gave thanks for YOU this morning in church..."
For me, those words of love, of graciousness, of acknowledgement and of humility will carry me through my spiritual journey and it is those simple acts of kindness that our Creator continues to teach us, whether in a new birth or rebirth or whether guiding our own ways to reach out and bless, help or comfort another.
Heavenly Creator, breathing life into our beating human hearts you brought us out of the darkness of chaos and into the Light. Free our spirits and guide our spirits to open our homes, and our homes of worship to those who are forgotten or neglected so that we truly give the gift that is everlasting; through your Son, our Savior and Lord. Amen.