Every year I write the “grace” that I then speak aloud at our Thanksgiving table. I am inspired by many sources including, but not limited to Buddhist wisdom, Native American traditions, and Unitarian Universalist faith heritage. As I am composing these words, my mind is focused on gratitude, and I experience grace. It is my hope that as I am saying grace, my family and our guests are experiencing grace. It is my hope that as you read these words, you experience grace.
There is so very much to be thankful for. We gather today to celebrate the many blessings that this life has bestowed upon us. Though we may each hold sacred a variety of different things, we all hold sacred the meal that is before us, this time we have together, and the Love that binds us to each other.
We are grateful to the Earth, whose rich soil nurtured the seeds that grew to become the food that graces our table. To the sun, whose energy and light allow those seeds to become plants that will fuel our bodies. To the rain that provides moisture, without which nothing grows. To the many hands that cultivated the seeds, harvested the food, brought the items to market, and offered them to us for our consumption. And to the creatures that sacrificed themselves, that we may be nourished. In savoring the deliciousness of this meal, may we be reminded of the deliciousness of life.
May we be aware of the evidence of abundance that surrounds us – both in the natural world, and in the comforts that we have acquired. May we recognize the gifts in everything we experience – the joys and the adventures, as well as the sorrows, and the hardships. May we be mindful and thankful for the fact that all of our problems are “first world problems”.
May our hearts overflow with compassion, for those whom we Love, and for those who are strangers to us; for those who have plenty, and for those who have nothing. May we hold in our hearts those who are hungry, who are cold, who are homeless, who are lonely. May we approach every challenge with a Loving perspective, that we may arrive at a Loving solution.
May we recognize what a gift it is for us to be here together, and in appreciating our togetherness, may we recognize the Oneness of all that is, and our connection to the Divine Energy of the Universe.
May our hearts overflow with gratitude for all of these things, not just on this day set aside for Thanksgiving, but eternally.
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