Each year, it seems like whiplash. One day, everything is black and orange, with “Monster Mash” and “Thriller” playing in stores, and even overnight, it all changes—suddenly, everything is red and green, the lights are already twinkling, and it’s “Holly Jolly Christmas” and “All I Want for Christmas Is You”. It’s almost like there’s nothing between Halloween and Christmas. But of course, there is: Thanksgiving. This should be a dearly held holiday for all Christians, because we are called to live lives of gratitude. The Reformed understanding of our relationship with God is that God has reached out to us in grace, and we are to respond in gratitude.
Some of my friends are encouraging folks to participate in a “month of gratitude”. The idea is that every day during the month of November, you take time to think about and name one thing you are grateful for. If you’re on social media, you may consider posting it as a Facebook status or tweet. If not, sharing it with a friend or writing it down in a journal can be a meaningful practice. No matter what, though, we should all take time to give our thanks to God in prayer. Especially as the holidays zoom ever closer, it is so easy to get lost in thoughts of what we don’t have instead of recognizing the many things that God has blessed us with.
This year, I am grateful for the energy and growth I’ve seen here at South River. With a little more than a year under my belt here at First Reformed Church, it is a joy to see Study Zone launch for another year, to work with high schoolers who are stepping into bigger leadership roles, to see our relationship with the Darul Arqam school blossom and grow, and look towards a busy season in the life of our congregation! The program updates on the next page take the form of a calendar, because there is so much happening here and we want you to be able to be a part of it.
Grace upon grace,