What’s Wrong with the World

The men signed of the cross of Christ go gaily in the dark.


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Thanksgiving: Not Weary in Well-Doing


"And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." (Galatians 6:9)

I don't know what it's like where my co-bloggers are located or where my readers are located, but here in lovely Michigan our normally lovely November went away early. Over the last few years I'd learned to count on golden-and-red-and-blue days of autumn and Indian summer in November. These help to compensate for the shock of the time change with the shift to very long, very dark evenings. But this year the leaves came down early and with them the cold, the snow, and the gloom came down early, too.

One tells oneself how privileged one is, but self-contempt is no substitute for gratitude, and saying, "You wimp! You're complaining about cold, short, dark days from inside a warm, safe house. You could be the people in California with their homes burning down or Asia Bibi wondering if she will be killed by a Muslim mob tomorrow" is not really quite the same thing as lifting one's heart in gratitude to the Maker and Giver of all good things.

Part of the trouble with saying what one is thankful for is that there is no original way to do it. So inevitably, it sounds banal. Even the more interesting or deep ways of saying profound things have been "done already" on social media or blogs, not to mention the millions of good books by the living and the dead, and done far better. So here I'm not going to attempt to be original, and I am going to take a very substantial risk of saying something that will simply "bounce," because "we all" (meaning those of us who are Christians) know it already.

According to Christianity, everything has meaning, and that is the greatest gift of all. If you are suffering, that has meaning. If you are joyful, that has meaning. If you have noticed some small, beautiful thing, that has meaning. If you have noticed some small, tragic thing, that has meaning. If you have a burden to bear, whether one that seems silly and that you are ashamed to mention or one that is so big that you don't know what to do with it, or some tragicomic mix of the two, according to Christianity, that has meaning.

If you are alone at Thanksgiving this year, that loneliness is meaningful to God. If you are with family who are driving you crazy or causing you serious pain and grief, that irritation or anguish has its place in your sanctification. If you are with family you love, that joy fits in as well.

So let us rejoice and give thanks, for our Lord has given us that which is beyond price. Let us pray for those who are in sorrow, need, sickness, or any other adversity. And let us not be weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

Happy thanksgiving to readers and co-bloggers here at What's Wrong With the World.

Comments (3)

Thank you, Lydia.

I will add one point from our Thanksgiving homily: the truly happy person is always one who has gratitude deep in their heart. Gratitude is in the core (along with love, and humility, etc). The one who is grateful "in everything", as St. Paul admonishes us, is close to God. Gratitude of this sort entails the submission of mind and will that accepts that not everything in this life is going to feel comfortable or the way we would have planned it. Or, for some or for certain moments, even much of anything.

I will add to this my own observation, that conservatism harbors a wholesome and high regard for such gratitude, enough so that gratitude is part of the defining attitude of the conservative. See http://whatswrongwrongwiththeworld.net/2017/04/is_this_conservatism.html

Thanks for this lovely and encouraging meditation, Lydia. There may be nothing new under the sun, but we each have our own ways of saying the not-new things, and I love and appreciate your way. May your Christmas season be filled with thankful joy.

Thank you, Tony and Beth.

Tony, what you say there reminds me of this, from some years back now.


Also our Chestertonian motto: The men signed of the cross of Christ go gaily in the dark.

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