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Thanksgiving Treasures Overflowing

Published: Friday, November 18, 2022

The Thanksgiving table will have a few less people this year, and that is OK. I will surely miss them, but when relatives bring new members to the family, sharing with them becomes a requirement. I'll get my turn at a table overflowing with people again soon enough.

It is funny in a way, to think that an overflow of people jockeying for a place at the table makes for good memories. I don't remember the synchronized eating required by shoulder-to-shoulder table seating, even though I know it was real.

I don't remember the panic I felt when we had to postpone Thanksgiving dinner because the power went out and we ended up at the local Bob Evans standing shoulder to shoulder with a mob of people who were also without power.

I don't remember driving all our aunts and uncles crazy with all the noise we made in the town hall every Thanksgiving evening—a tradition that lasted over 75 years.

What I remember is the people and how each made me feel. Each person is a family treasure in their own right, even though many have passed on. The joy of gathering over a meal of thanks is a treasure. My treasure chest of warmth and family and good memories is overflowing!

Of course, not everyone has a strong foundation of good holiday memories. Families are far from perfect, and what should be a happy family gathering can be bitter reminders of lost loved ones, others who choose to be absent and others who must be absent because of work or life demands. Some families can't resist the opportunity for a good brawl over what should be a time of good fellowship. Life's not perfect, and holidays can bring out the worst. But they can also bring out the best.

It's a blessing to have a foundation of good, positive and cherished memories attached to a season set aside for thanks, and in that department, I am incredibly blessed!

Will your home be bursting at the seams this Thanksgiving, or will there be fewer places to set at the table this year? Either way, it's not about the food or the size of the gathering. It is about warmth, love and gratitude. It is making the people you cherish feel loved and appreciated. It is about giving thanks to God for every blessing, large and small.

Thanksgiving is about making room at the table for guests and making them feel like family. It is making room for someone who may be having a lonely, emotional or difficult holiday and welcoming them to your table. It's sharing your table bounty and joy abundance with someone whose Thanksgiving treasures are running a little low this year.

Wishing all a blessed Thanksgiving!

"Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him and bless His name." Psalm 100:4.

Bev Berens is a freelance writer and FFA parent from Holland, Mich. She can be contacted at

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