Giving Thanks

As I embark on yet another 10k early this morning, I have to acknowledge the fact that I'm doing this race at this time of the year and virtually at that. If anyone is familiar with the Peachtree Road Race, you know it’s the largest 10k race in the world. On Independence Day, people from every corner of Earth travel to the “A” to compete in what's arguably the most fun you'll have over 6.6 miles. I would be dishonest in saying I wasn't particularly disappointed that the race wasn't on its traditional date or in it's traditional manner, but we’ve all had to make adjustments for the greater good. That's why I give thanks more than ever this holiday season.

“Count it up, count it up, count it up. Line 'em up, line 'em up, line 'em up. Swear the sun shinin' on me in my huddle. No matter the trouble surroundin' us. They don't see that it's a lot of us. Everybody move anonymous. Won't take that credit, I know where we get it. Them blessings be comin' from God above.” - Lecrae

We’ve all made sacrifices small and large, in effort to keep our families and ourselves safe as possible. My kids haven't stepped foot into a classroom since March of this year with no plans on returning this academic year. My home has been my workplace since March as well, with a target return to office date that continues to be pushed back. We’ve adapted. We’re also immensely grateful to be afforded the opportunity to be with each other during a pandemic. I often catch myself spewing first world problems when silly situations like an unplanned Zoom meeting occurs. I'm grounded knowing that so many people are deemed by our economy to be classified as “essential workers”. People like my best friend who braves the elements each morning to construct the buildings that contribute to our city being a global powerhouse. It's not lost on me that his children would love for him to be at home as much as I’m at home with my kids, yet dollars mean more to our country than the strengthening of family units. I'm not thankful, not foolish. 

As we prepare to have dinner in person or via Zoom, it’s important for me to reflect on the year thus far. We’ve dealt with a pandemic that has seemed to impact everyone on our planet, the sudden deaths of notable people, and an American presidential election that revealed the land of the free is slowly learning its lesson. As much as there is to loathe concerning the year 2020, there is equal amounts to appreciate. This year has made me thankful for the laughter, the joy, the perseverance, but mostly the introspection. I’ve learned to adapt this year more than I have in a long time. It seems difficult, perhaps senseless to show gratitude when our family members, neighbors, and loved ones are dying. What I’ve learned this year is, being thankful is an action we show for what we have even in the midst of all that we’ve lost. We’ve lost being busy, yet have gained time. We’ve lost jobs, yet discovered careers. We’ve lost loved ones, yet many of us have grown even closer to each other. Anxiety over this virus that’s ravaged so much still exists. Uncertainty over what’s to become of the United States in the next few years is valid. Yet, we still give thanks. It's a simple phrase of gratitude directed to the Grand Architect. It’s hugging your children tighter at night before they go to bed. It’s slow dancing a bit longer with your wife on a Friday evening. It’s calling that friend that’s been on your mind for the last few days. We give thanks in every thing that we do, but today we’ll give just a bit more.