We don’t have Thanksgiving in South Africa. Not even our own version like the Canadians do. And roasting an entire turkey is a bit unheard of – they don’t fit in most braai’s, and anyway would take way too much charcoal. We just go all in and roast and entire cow if the occasion calls for it.
I tend not to post things of an overtly religious nature here as I realise many of the people who follow this blog is not religious and may even be anti-religious and I don’t believe in shoving the Bible down people’s throats. But you’re a fool if you argue the Bible is irrelevant and has nothing to say to our modern society. This post by Matt Marino is a prime example and I think a suitable read for thanksgiving. And, like Matt, I point my finger at me first when I read this…the only time when you’re allowed to do that, I think.
There is a secret. It will change your life. And once you know it, you will never forget it.
I first realized I was “that guy” in our neighborhood at my daughter’s pirate-themed fifth birthday party. I suspect many youth ministry people grow up to become “that guy.” This really shouldn’t come as a surprise. The years we spend active with teenagers develop a set of skills, that when exercised with small children, in particular, small children with overprotective parents, make us quite popular with those children and considerably less so with their parents.
We had recently moved from a street where we had the only children on the block to a neighborhood with at least 30 kids in our children’s age group. Much to our chagrin, every one of those kids and their keepers converged on our home for my daughter’s party-the parade from both directions was quite a…
I realise I’ve been giving myself (and this blog) over to a lot of rants recently. Sorry about that. Sometimes you just need to, you know, vent.
But today I’m going to remedy that. See, yesterday when I got home I saw to my great delight that my neighbour had returned. His name is Elmo.
Actually, I’m not sure if he’s name is really Elmo, or even if he’s really a he. But the wife and I named him Elmo because we like Elmo from Sesame Street (who doesn’t?), we have a friend named Elmo and it’s fun to say Elmo the emu. Oh, yeah! Elmo’s an emu. Meet Elmo.
Emu’s are large, flightless birds indigenous to Australia. They are the largest birds in Australia and second-largest in the world after the ostrich. Emus are farmed in Australia, the US, Peru and China for their meat, leather and oil made from their fat. I’ve never eaten emu. I have eaten ostrich (note: not “an ostrich” – that would be impossible).
I wanted to write something for Mother’s Day today, but am finding it surprisingly hard. I think what’s giving me problems is that it’s enormously difficult to write anything that’s not a mind-numbing cliché.
So, let me keep things very simple: You wouldn’t be here today without your mum. Literally. If you don’t believe me, go make friends with a Biology teacher. He’ll explain it to you.
You also wouldn’t be the person you are today without your mother (from here onwards read ‘whoever filled the role of mother in your life’). This includes your negative traits, by the way – mothers mess up.
If you’re so lucky that your mother is still alive, give her a call today. If she’s near enough, go visit and give her a hug. Even if at this point you don’t really like her (it happens – she might even deserve it), put your own feelings aside for a day and appreciate the good that she has done. Because you are who you are because of her. And one day she’s going to be gone and then you won’t have that chance anymore.
So to all the birth mothers, stepmothers, foster mothers, adoptive mothers, godmothers and even grandmothers out there: Happy Mother’s Day. We appreciate you even if we don’t always show it. Thanks for putting up with all our nonsense.
We don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in South Africa, it being an American holiday, but I think it’s a really neat idea. I’m not speaking here of the commercialised holiday that is nothing more than an excuse to stuff yourself with too much food, fight with relatives and trample people in shopping malls (that is, of course, if American television portrays an accurate image of Thanksgiving). No, I mean the idea of celebrating being thankful. Continue reading “On Giving Thanks”→