Thursday, January 24, 2019

"Post"-Thanksgiving Thanks

A postcard a day; that's what He wanted. On one side of an index card, a sketch of the moment I was most thankful for from the day before, and on the other, a short explanation of what the moment meant to me.

It didn't matter to Him that even stick-figure people are beyond my artistic skills; He would look beyond what my hands had drawn and recognize the moment that had mattered to me from what He read in my heart. And then, I could picture Him, proud Parent that he is, posting my card on the front of His fridge; His heart delighted repeatedly by the daily connection with mine.

I've long had a thing about postcards. Sending, receiving, even buying them on trips just to post on my fridge to remind me where I've been – it's all about sharing a happy time with someone I love. Those in my immediate family are the usual recipients...but I keep a half-century-old connection fresh with my best friend from high school through the give and take of postcards from our travels. Short on other forms of communication, we say “Hi! I'm sill alive...and thinking of you!” with a short note on a picture postcard in the mail.

A bit of a jealous sort, God simply wanted the same... a word of thanks and love about a moment from the day before, sent to my Best Friend. It wasn't any artistic expertise He was looking for... more the fact that I took a moment to share one with Him. It's the “thinking of You” thought that counts.

And so I began. The drawings were crude but it was fun to make the attempt; more difficult was limiting my thoughts on the subject to the small square of space on the index card back. I addressed them by what I was feeling about Him each day. Sometimes it was “My Father in Heaven” (with a Hallowed by Thy Name! written underneath). Other times it was a simple “Dad”... or “My Healer”...even one to “The Cookie Captain” when I was especially enjoying a pre-breakfast bakery snack as I drew! And I made sure to draw a “love” stamp in the top right corner of every card...simply in recognition that each and every day is stamped with His love.

I thought the whole idea was just supposed to be a fun spiritual activity for the month of November, the month when our hearts and thoughts turn to giving thanks. More than an obligation, it became something I found occupying my thoughts in spare moments, and my morning art attempt something I increasingly looked forward to each day. But Thanksgiving passed and I kept drawing my part because there were still so many blank ones left in the stack. I thought maybe I should keep at it until I'd used them all up.

And bingo! That's when the lights flashed, bells clanged, and I finally got the point. If each card represented a day, shouldn't all my days be filled with thanks and love expressed in some way? I don't know how many are left in my “stack”...but surely I don't want to leave any blank! And who's to say that God doesn't slip a few extra “card days” in my life expectancy in response to my expressions o f love, simply because He loves to receive them so? Maybe we shouldn't end the giving of thanks when the turkey carcass is thrown in the trash.

My kids were all home for the holiday just past. At various times I caught them staring at my fridge, looking for their faces in the usual pictures posted there and likewise finding their places in my heart. Together we rejoiced over happy times spent together, remembering the laughter and love we've shared as we look forward to future joy.

How good to know that one day I'll simply go Home and do the same.

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you...”
(James 4:9 NKJV, emphasis mine)

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