Even though we’re staying home for a modest Thanksgiving celebration, our cozy house has been bustling for days with culinary preparations and we look forward to enjoying all the wonderful things we love doing for the holidays: logs blazing in the fireplace, hot wassail, music, excessive cheese consumption and a little extra luxury reading. Aaron says these are slightly pretentious activities, but the truth is that we’re just really awesome.
With our other traditions, I’ve noticed that we always get into philosophical money discussions around the holidays, too. These conversations ask not so much “How much are we spending on travel and gifts?” but “Do we like the direction our lifestyle is taking us? What do we want to correct in our current financial path?” Even this year, after we absorbed a significant income reduction and made some noticeable cuts in our spending so I could quit my day job and teach music at home, our conclusion is the same as in the past: we are happiest when we live simply. A shared attitude of renewed contentment is one of the things I love most about this time of year…. but what does it say about our general cultural prosperity that a graduate student and self-employed musician can make a conscious decision to be more frugal? Our cup of blessing overflows! We praise God for the rich supply he has brought us and pray that our lives will become wholesome grain for His glorious harvest, too.
Come, ye thankful people, come, raise the song of harvest home;
all is safely gathered in, ere the winter storms begin.
God our Maker doth provide for our wants to be supplied;
Come to God’s own temple, come, raise the song of harvest home.
All the world is God’s own field, fruit as praise to God we yield;
Wheat and tares together sown are to joy or sorrow grown;
First the blade and then the ear, then the full corn shall appear;
Lord of harvest, grant that we wholesome grain and pure may be.
Even so, Lord, quickly come, bring thy final harvest home;
Gather thou thy people in, free from sorrow, free from sin,
There, forever purified, in thy presence to abide;
Come, with all thine angels, come, raise the glorious harvest home.
– “Come, Ye Thankful People, Come” by Henry Alford, 1844
…Okay, did you think this was going to be a post of thoughtful Thanksgiving commentary? I’m way too ADD to stick with one thing for very long. Those who want to see what our kitchen looks like can now offer thanks for this gift I present: Check out this video of how un-finished (and yet, so beautiful!) the kitchen is looking these days!