The word for today is difficult because there has never, ever been a Thanksgiving like this one! Twenty-twenty is our most challenging year ever making this message difficult to conceive.

            Thanksgiving Day is tomorrow and we all have a ton of blessings to celebrate. As always, I’m sure we will show our gratitude, thankfulness, and appreciation for the many positive things and people in our lives.

            On the other hand, we each have losses this year to overcome and deal with. Loss of lives, businesses, jobs, friends, associations, and events too many to list but including senior years, graduations, weddings, funerals, trips, vacations, and on and on.

            So, what about tomorrow? How will you deal with Thanksgiving? Two of the so-called 4-F’s of Thanksgiving are in jeopardy if we heed the advice from leaders in defeating the Corona Virus. The Four are food, family, friends, and football. Two can be front and center, but we are being strongly advised to limit gatherings of family and friends.

            Remember: if you have to rationalize your Thanksgiving plans you likely are NOT following the suggested guidelines.

            We all desire this lifestyle caused by COVID 19 to end and fortunately, there appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel with vaccines nearly ready for use.

            I firmly believe we are being tested. Our individual behaviors will determine how successful we are in the final accounting. Thanksgiving is traditionally our most group-oriented holiday. Add in colder weather meaning more time inside and large gatherings give this virus a leg up against us. Every holiday thus far this year has resulted in a spike, but we do have the ability to limit the negative effects from this one.

            I’ll end with two thoughts from dedicated health care professionals. The first described her advice as cheesy, but I disagree. It was simply: Give Thanks, not COVID!

            Then simply: If you let the virus out of the box it’s impossible to put it back in!

            Enough said. Please celebrate wisely. Let’s show our thanks by being responsible citizens in our conduct and prayerful in our thoughts.

            I’m Steve Sauder

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