Meet my long time friend Lisa. We have been friends for over 20 years & have carried each other through many of life’s ups & downs. She has a huge love for God, family, & friends. She has put a lot into my life & those around her. Help me welcome her to our Thanksgiving round table.

By: Lisa Nunes

Thanksgiving is a fuzzy word for giving thanks but what it should mean is being thankful: for God’s grace on us; His protection over us; His provisions and blessings towards us. But what does it mean, what should it mean?

For me it is the miracles that He has shown me throughout my life. Those moments when His grace and love that He has made evident to me.

My mom drinking and locking us out of the house and having neighbours that would take us in till she or my dad came home.

When my parent’s marriage fell apart and my grandparents and my aunt and uncle would make the summer a holiday for us by inviting us – my brother, sister and myself – to stay at my grandparent’s and my aunt and uncle taking everywhere they went, making us feel like we were a part of their family. Providing a haven for us in the midst of all the chaos that had become our lives: mom giving up her parental rights to us; dad marrying a horrible woman that would abuse and degrade us on a daily basis.

When my dad’s marriage was falling apart and he dumped me on mom and stepdad’s doorstep after they had already taken in my sister; when my sister and I were at each other’s throats and my stepdad couldn’t handle me anymore because I was smoking, stealing money and just acting out my anger on him and my sister and asking my grandparents to take me in for the summer and left their house ten years later to get married. My grandparents were in their sixties, they had raised their children and were enjoying their retirement when they take on this broken, angry, rejected, and abandoned little girl who was almost sixteen but in reality was only ten or twelve emotionally because of all that had happened to her.

The moment when my daughter was fighting for her life, to be born into this world but because of all the medication and hours of labour she almost died and the doctors were on top of what was going on and prepared for the worst but saved her life.

When my grandfather died suddenly and we were all unprepared because two weeks before his death he was renovating their bathroom and he was only ninety-one years old.

When just today as I was playing with my nephew, I saw the scar that reaches from just under his armpit to the middle of his back and I was reminded of how he had to fight to live and had lung surgery at two months old as a testament to that fight, is now a thriving three-year-old.

What does all this mean for me? That I need to remember that Jesus died on a cross to save me from sin and not spending eternity with Him and His Father; that His grace is sufficient for me; that His promises are true and He stills performs miracles every day in my life; that I need to be thankful for His love, grace, blessings and provisions every day and that I am His. And the turkey and trimmings are just a bonus.

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