A reason to be grateful

Pay attention to acts of compassion and giving by others.

I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart. I will tell all the miracles you have done. I will be happy because of you; God most high, I will sing praises to your name. Psalm 9:1

As Thanksgiving approaches, most of us will be thinking about those things we have that are blessings. For the most part, we have food, water, housing and support from families and friends. For those who are in need, Enumclaw has many ways we try to support those who have less. I, for one, am grateful for the food banks, Plateau Outreach Ministries, and our various congregations who collect food and clothing to be donated.

There is a reason this season for us to be grateful and sorrowful at the same time. The people of Southern Madagascar have suffered near-famine conditions because of years-long drought caused by climate change. They lack adequate water and have severe shortage of food. Nearly 400,000 people are on the point of starvation.

World News tonight, the ABC news affiliate, sponsored a program that focused on the plight of these suffering people. As a result, viewers responded and donations literally poured in. At this point over 2.7 million dollars have been donated. The World Food Program has been organizing these donations.

This kind of response is reason to be grateful. It reinforces the fact that God is present and hears our prayers. It is also a testimony to our response to God’s command that we take care of one another. In a recent meeting of the Plateau Ministerial Association, Pastor Keith Marshall said a profound statement. He said we are to love those who are in our face. When I look at the photos of the faces of these people in Madagascar, they, too, are in our face. This response that so many have already done attests to the impact that love can have.

When we gather to celebrate Thanksgiving, stories like this enlarge our celebrations. We give and we receive. Thanks be to God.