I love the contrasts of November. Short, dark days foretell the hardships of winter, yet home is cozy and warm. The November landscape is bleak, yet beauty is there if we look for it. The days grow cold, and we worry about our heating bills, yet the first snowfall is magical.
November brings contrast to the life of our little church as well. On the November 6, All Souls’ Day, by sharing memories and mementos we honor the people we loved who have died. I suspect that many focused on other losses—or fear of losses—as well, this November. Some in our church family are suffering illness, some have fears of job loss, worries about money, or worries about people they love. Our country is hurting: We are a divided nation and it is hard to see the end of that. There is plenty of fear and loss to go around.
God is there in the contrasts.
Yet November also brings Thanksgiving. In spite of sadness and worry, we find joy as we recognize the many, many blessings God has given us, and we hear God’s call to share our blessings with others. We will celebrate Thanksgiving Sunday on the 20th, a time to focus on gratitude for what we have and to do what we can to contribute to the needs of our church.
Thanksgiving is a reminder, as well, of God’s continual presence with us, in our sorrows, our losses, and our fears, and in our joys and celebrations. God is there in the contrasts.
—P. Wallender, Deacons