It’s that time of year. There’s finally a little chill in the Atlanta air. Thanksgiving nears on the calendar. And people banter about whether it’s too early to begin playing Christmas music. But I’m thinking about Thanksgiving, reflecting on thankfulness.
When I was asked the traditional “What are you thankful for?” question, my mind immediately kicked into overdrive. I don’t feel thankful in the moment. I’m waiting. Waiting to hear back on a few things. Waiting for a few people to follow-through on their plans. Waiting for days on the calendar to pass. Once those things happen. Once those details fall into place. Then. Then I’ll be thankful for all of it!
Have you ever seen the movie Evan Almighty? A modern twist on Noah and the Ark, Steve Carell plays Evan Baxter, an ambitious politician who God (played by Morgan Freeman) instructs to build a boat. But before this happens - when his family moved into their new, beautiful home after his election win - his family prays. Evan’s wife, played by Lauren Graham, prays for their family to become closer. But as the movie progresses and her husband’s boat-building behavior becomes more and more bizarre, she takes their sons and leaves Evan for a short period.
It’s then that God comes to her. And in a poignant scene, he suggests that when we pray, perhaps God doesn’t zap answers to problems. Rather, He creates opportunities for us to grow deeper.
So I’m thinking about thankfulness, and I’m waiting. I’m finding I am thankful for these opportunities to wait, to develop patience, to notice things I might have missed if everything I’m waiting on had fallen into place right away. Where is God at work in the waiting? I’m thankful for the chance to look around and see.