Thanksgiving and What It Means to Me
Thursday, November 27, 2014
Last week a long-time friend and I were talking about holy days vs. holidays and what’s the difference? When we got to Thanksgiving, she asked me what I was thankful for. I thought for a few seconds, not really contemplating; because I knew the answer. I think about it a lot, Thanksgiving.
“And?” she asked. “Anybody home in there?”
“I’m thankful I got to experience life,” I said, as I have said many times. “Otherwise I would just be a bunch of molecules and atoms zooming through the fridgidity of outer space at near zero Kelvin degrees. It would be lonely, though I wouldn’t know it.”
“Only you would think of something like that.”
Maybe so, but I doubt it. I think most of us over ten years old have asked why we’re here in the first place.
As I have aged, aged well I should say which is just one more thing to be thankful for, I began to ask not only why we were here but why we were only here and apparently, nowhere else. Not to diminish the possibility of life like us out there somewhere, but the world has spent billions so far looking for it- life of any kind at all. I don’t think we have even discovered a bacterium, amoeba or fruit fly. So much money; so little life.
I am thankful that God gave me a chance to live this test-of-all-tests with a chance at eternal life instead of the first hundred years only. Were it not for that sperm and ovum, a fetus would not have formed. In the whole universal scheme of things, how likely is life to happen for any of us?
I was born in 1947, two years after World War II and one year before Israel became a country, again… just as predicted 2,700 years or so ago. Times were tough for my young parents after the war, a war my dad served as an Army Medic yet never spoke of the experience. It was tough for many if not most after that war. So I am thankful that abortion wasn’t legal then. It probably would not have happened anyway, as my parents weren't religious and believed life began upon growth; but still… I am thankful for that.
I am thankful I watched a Hal Lindsay movie that night in 1980, which moved me from a life in the fast lane to a life in the saved lane. Even today when I communicate with people who knew me way back when, they find it hard to believe that I write to glorify God. Hal did this for many people, as did Jack Kinsella.
I am thankful I had the opportunity of meeting Jack Kinsella a couple of years ago, so much so I have him as a character in my book series in which he is a medical savior of sorts. There is not a day that passes that I don’t wish that God had left him here a little longer, because he was, and is, unique in his biblical knowledge and the way he could present it. I read his articles even today. I am thankful I met such a remarkable man.
I am thankful that I ran into the Omega Letter family, of which Jack was the founder and editor. It was a fluke, the way our relationship started; and sometimes God’s mysterious ways do appear as flukes.
When I first contacted Omega Letter four years ago, after The End Part One was published, it was strictly for advertising on the Omega Letter website. Kari quickly let me know that they did not offer paid advertising but did offer me a chance to be one of their writers. I sent a copy of Part One; and here I am, writing for you and mostly, God.
Through my relationship with Omega Letter, I have made many friends with subscribers, from South Africa to Canada to England and Australia and am now an “internationally recognized” author! All because of Omega Letter.
As a brand new author with no agent and not enough time to wait for one, I self-published and hit the streets with boxes of books in my trunk, figuring that any reputable book store, like Barnes & Nobel, would surely want my fantastic book. When that didn’t work because of the “we do not deal with self-published authors” syndrome (WDNDWSPA Syndrome) which thankfully is changing, I headed to large churches.
It used to be one could walk in a church and see a preacher, but now you need an appointment. So I left complimentary copies for the main preacher, about 100 copies. Never received a single comment, and those books are probably still sitting in a drawer somewhere. That was my awakening that many modern era churches do not give a flip for the last book of the Bible, arguably the most important.
It was Omega Letter that gave me my start and most of my book sales have come through this venue, from OL subscribers. So I am very thankful, as is my mortgage company.
I am thankful that God gave me a zealous desire to write about Him. It has relieved a lot of guilt for the life I once lived, a life I knew was wrong by the time I got through the first chapter of Leviticus. After one article I wrote about the tragedy of abortion, a couple of friends who have known me for decades expressed that I was being awfully judgmental, considering my fast-laned past. I explained that I, like many in the 70s, had my part in that tragedy also; and I now knew it was not “okay” no matter how many times the media said it was.
Some have asked me why I didn’t become a preacher, but I am not worthy to wear that cloak. I cannot walk the walk as closely as preachers should. And in some ways I am a preacher through my writings. That is a gift that I thank God for daily, sometimes two or three times.
But most of all, above anything else, I am thankful that God gave me, and you, Jesus the Christ who saved us from ourselves. God did for us what He would not allow Abraham to do for Him. Were it not for Jesus, there would have been no early Thanksgiving by the Pilgrims. There would have been no Christmas season in which the human spirit seems to be transformed for a month between Thanksgiving and Christmas, a transformation of extraordinary giving. Why is that?
Because it’s a miracle.
Thanksgiving is a Holy Day. Happy Thanksgiving to all!
About J.L. Robb
Last week: Garbage In; Garbage Out
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