Saturday, November 03, 2007

Come Ye Thankful People Come...

This is an open invitation. Y'all are invited to my cyber-establishment for Thanksgiving cyber-dinner. We're going to have cyber-turkey (both cyber-white and cyber-dark meat) and cyber-mashed potatoes (fresh--not out of a cyber-packet) and, of course, the traditional cyber-pumpkin pie. Yum, yum! The best thing about a cyber-banquet is the that cyber-calories do not go to your hips, midriff or thighs--in fact, they go nowhere at all. So feel free to pig out at my cyber-party. You can never feel guilty--even when taking that last slice of cyber-pie since your cyber-hostess can easily click on "edit" and hit "copy" at any time...

Well, by now I'm sure you've guess I'm being plain silly here. What else is new? You haven't taken my dinner offer seriously I suspect, but I am serious--Why not throw a cyber-Thanksgiving celebration?

All right let's start with who's bringing what... How about you in the Fort Worth/Dallas Metroplex bring the potatoes and the rolls, you guys up in the northern section of the country can bring the stuffing--make it cornbread for me if you can, but if you can't, we'll ask our neighbors from Dixie to do the honors. I figured my Southern guests could bring the sweet potato pie and that my Western guests could bring some rattlesnake meat for a little variety. Cranberries? Oh, sure--some of my Massachusetts readers can provides those--right, guys? Pumpkin pie... who's going to bring that? How about we give that particular honor to the Midwesterners. The St. Louisans can bring toasted raviolis and Ted Drewes' frozen custard so others can sample some of the regional cuisine.

The best thing about a cyber-celebration is that there's simply no need for advance preparation. Can you tell that my home isn't completely spotless online? Of course not! Can you tell I'm passing out cheap paper plates and not the good china? Not really! Can I tell that you just spilled your iced tea and cranberry sauce onto the light beige carpeting? No way! Entertainment? Heck, the Internet is entertainment enough already, so who needs charades and sing-alongs? You don't even have to worry about us pulling out our family photo albums and boring you for hours with our girls' baby pictures. It's a totally stress-free party. I don't even have to worry about kicking you out before midnight--I'll simply "switch off" and let you wander the worldwide web by yourselves...

Stop and think here a minute about how fortunate we are even to be considering throwing a party, cyber or otherwise. Think about how many individuals are eating a warmed-over turkey dinner courtesy of their local Salvation Army or other non-profit organization. We worry about getting our holiday shopping done--others worry about having a roof over their heads come winter. We worry over whether or not to buy a bigger, faster hard drive for our computer--others worry whether or not they should eat or pay on their mounting medical bills. We citizens of cyberspace have a great deal to be thankful for.

Let's be honest: As Americans, the idea of giving thanks to our Heavenly Father for the blessings He has bestowed upon us this past year is usually the last thing on our "to-do list." Whenever we hear the phrase "Happy Thanksgiving" we drool thinking about the succulent turkey and spicy dressing we're about to consume. We crave the sheer joy of being able to sleep in on a weekday. We make big plans to head out to the mall to walk off those extra pounds we gained in our gluttony and start our Christmas shopping in earnest. Prayer and thankfulness are the furthermost things from our minds the last weekend in November.

The modern manifestation of the holiday really wasn't what George Washington had in mind when he declared the first official Thanksgiving Day celebration in 1789. Neither was it for the Pilgrims. William Bradford and the survivors of the Plymouth Colony were just plain grateful to be standing after a harsh first year which killed half of them off. I doubt there were any slugs snoozing late at that original Thanksgiving celebration. Our ancestors may have not known what a "Butterball" was in the 17th or 18th century, but one thing they did know: They knew whom to thank for the blessings of liberty, home and family.

Don't let the glitter and gloss of the Brave New CyberWorld and the new millennium blind you to whom your prayers should be directed to on this national day of giving thanks. God isn't "virtual reality"--He's the real thing. And you don't need a modem to "chat" with Him, either.

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