HAPPENINGS: The Thanksgiving holiday is underappreciated

Janice Lynn Crose | Special to the News Bulletin/USA TODAY NETWORK

CRESTVIEW — Thanksgiving seems to get overshadowed by Christmas.

Stores have had Christmas decorations up for months and many of them don't even bother with Thanksgiving any more. They go directly from Halloween to Christmas.

Our family has always felt that Thanksgiving was an under-appreciated holiday. We have so many things for which we need to be both grateful and thankful. We also need to share our abundance with those who may not be as fortunate.

Many churches have a benevolence fund to assist members who may need a little extra help. Check with your church office and see if there are families that may need groceries. You can donate money to help pay utility bills, purchase fuel so people can get to work, or even pay rent.

It seems there is a consistent need for funds to assist someone in the church family. Be generous. The Lord didn't bless you so that you could stockpile money or "toys." While we need to be wise with our money, we also need to be aware of the needs of others.

One thing we have learned over the years is that we can survive nicely without the latest and greatest electronic gadgets. We can save for more pressing needs, such as home repairs, and also use some of our income to support missionaries or other ministries.

We also need to give thanks for the freedoms we have living in our country. How can we show our gratitude for our freedom? Thank a service member the next time you see one in uniform, perhaps buy their lunch or dinner. Find out if there is an organization that is sending cards and packages to deployed service members and take part in this project. The holidays can be lonely for those overseas.

We also need to be grateful to our first responders for keeping our community safe. Bake or buy some cookies, doughnuts or pastries and take them to the Crestview Fire Department, sheriff's station here in Crestview, or to the Crestview Police Department. Have your children make cards for these selfless individuals thanking them for their service.

What are you thankful for this year? Who would you like to thank?

Here are a few things on my family's list:

  • the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior.
  • Jim and I are thankful for each other.
  • our home.
  • clean drinking water.
  • our wonderful pets.
  • the Bible.
  • our wonderful military and first responders.
  • friends and church family.
  • our pastor and his dedication.

As we go into Thanksgiving week, don't forget to be kind to others. Use "please" and "thank you" in your conversations with others and be patient.

Happy Thanksgiving! May the Lord bless you and your family.

Janice Lynn Crose

Janice Lynn Crose, a former accountant, lives in Crestview with her husband, Jim; her two rescue collies, Shane and Jasmine; and two cats, Kathryn and Prince Valiant.