Why I’m Not Faking Thankfulness This Year

Inside: Thanksgiving is almost here. Are you like me and have good intentions for the Holiday? I want to make sure my heart is set to thankful this year.

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Thanksgiving is almost here. Are you like me and have good intentions for the Holiday?

The perfectly set table, or the picture-perfect pie with the expert fluted pie crust. Will your home festive atmosphere make Martha Stewart rip out the thumbs up in approval?

Maybe you’re like me and will slap a smile on your face, and hope that I will be thankful on that day. It’s not that I’m not thankful, but the day’s circumstances can turn my thankful heart into an unappreciative heart.

We go through the Thanksgiving motions, but our hearts are devoid of the right kind of emotions.



The Imperfect Holiday

The kids mess up the clean house before company arrives. My oven holding the 23-pound turkey is on the fritz. My oven mitt had a hole in it, I burned my hand and dropped the perfectly constructed pie.

The day flies by and soon I’m wishing for a re-do. I’m embarrassed by my attitude to others, myself and especially to God. Thankful, I what I want to be on this special day.

I made a list of things that aren’t going to rustle my feathers this year. I want to be truly thankful for this day.

First of all, I’m going to spend some extra time in the Word in the morning. What better way to prepare our hearts for thanksgiving, than in our Father’s word.

We were created to be thankful.


Now before I get to the list, I want to say as Christians every day should be thanksgiving. God has done marvelous things for us. The day of our Thanksgiving celebration could be a good reminder to show to others how thankful we are and minister to them about the great things God has done.

5 things I’m going to leave behind this year, so I don’t have to fake thankfulness:

  1. The hustle and bustle of Thanksgiving are not going to pin me this year. I’m going to leave Martha Stewart to her own devices and realize people are more important than the DIY dyed corn husk table settings. I will be thankful for the provision of food, even if the turkey isn’t a perfectly crafted masterpiece,
  2. I will not let the past or current family problems affect my mood and keep me from experiencing the fellowship of those around me. Every family has problems. God’s Golden rule plays into how we treat our family. Pain and hurt are real, I understand that, but I am choosing to overlook those feelings this year.
  3. I will not think about the awkwardness of spending time with family members I haven’t seen in a year. Rather I will converse and instead make the environment welcoming and inviting to others.
  4. I’m going to enjoy Thanksgiving in its entirety, and not get caught up in the Black Friday shopping. It’s hard to enjoy and be thankful for the day when our minds are on the sales and spendings of shopping.
  5. I’m going to use my time to witness to those family members that say “I don’t have anything to be thankful about.” I can remind them of the breath they just took and the home they have.

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A Thankful Heart

The meaning of this special day is going to be my focus this year.

I don’t want to miss it this year, but rather have an authentic thankful heart, especially on this day.  God’s blessings are all around us, won’t you be extra thankful like me this year?


17 Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens.[a] He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.[b]  (James 1:17, NLT).


So the pie isn’t perfect? Cut it into wedges. Stay in control, and never panic. ~Martha Stewart

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  1. What a great list of things to leave behind in order to stay thankful. But starting the day with God and giving thanks to Him, first on my list too! Thank you, Julie, for a reminder my heart needs.
    Sweet blessings to you, friend. xoxo

  2. Amen, girl. This is a new mindset. I am desiring this too. Last year I was in the dumps due to job issues and feeling like things were falling apart. It is crazy that I ever let myself go there, in such a downward spiral of thinking that even on Thanksgiving I wanted to hide in a corner…but I did. This year my mindset has changed and I pray I can be a witness too, even if smiling and being kind. Blessings to you sweet, friend.

    1. Meg- I’m so glad for hope and change, aren’t you? Just because the past had us feeling a certain way, we can strive to be different!
      Thanksgiving is going to be a great day to witness, and be thankful;)

  3. This blog is on point. I love each of your resolutions and am adopting them as my own. I love the intentionality. I will or I will not. We will be thankful this year on that day and everyday.

  4. This will be my third thanksgiving away from family together with my husband. I recall both of the previous two being difficult because nothing can replace sitting around your own family’s table. It’s easier to ignore the holiday so it’s not so painful, but I hope that hasn’t been stripping away my thankful spirit along with it.

    1. Awww…praying for some comfort for you this year. Family is a gift and when we don’t have it near it hurts.
      Can you start some new traditions with your husband?


  5. Funny how the holiday of thankfulness can breed so much angst and bitterness. Good for you for sidestepping that this year. I love Thanksgiving because it sets a tone for my whole November, and I really need that outward focus coming into the busy-ness!

    1. Michele- I love how you use November to set the tone for the next season. You are such a wealth of wisdom friend!

  6. Thank-you for the reminders Julie. I especially love numbers 1 and 2. I intend on approaching this holiday season with these things in mind and I’m sure my children will appreciate a more relaxed mom who is not looking for perfection but connection. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

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