If you are like me, you stand amazed at the even-more-increasing commercialization of Christmas.  How could it get *more*?!?  But it is.  Remember the good old days when commercials hit the day after Thanksgiving?  Instead of, well, before Halloween?  Sigh….

I’m impressed and thankful, though, that Thanksgiving hasn’t gotten that crazy yet.  It’s a bit strange that it hasn’t, almost as if there’s a sacred aura about it that keeps it from being capitalized.  Unlike one of the holiest days in the Christian calendar???  Go figure.

For me, for a long time, Thanksgiving has been my favorite holiday.  A simple and crystal clear message with deep resonances.  Many of us have so much to be thankful for.  And we devote a day to it.  If we are lucky, we can spend it with family and friends, cooking, eating, talking, and doing other things we like.  How good can it get?

Like all holidays, it’s very hard on other people.   Obviously the homeless and hungry.   The disenfranchised.  Those driven out of their homes or countries.  The sick.  The lonely.  Those desperate to find enough to survive on, let alone to be content or even thrive.  Those of us who have a lot – and I’ve come to realize that I had a lot even when I thought I had nothing, and was as poor as a church mouse – can take this opportunity to reflect on how fortunate we are, and how we can help those less fortunate, from the lonely neighbor to those in the homeless shelter across town, to those in war-torn nations, to those being starved to death because of insane national agendas.

Even as our hearts break with the misery and suffering in the world, though, we are thankful for all the good things we have.  At least I am.  I love this holiday.

You too no doubt have lots of things you’re thankful for.  A minor point of thankfulness for some of you, I hope, is this blog, a place where you can escape the daily grind for a few minutes and read about issues that you’re interested in, and have your questions answered about the great religion that stands both at the foundation of our civilization and in the background for many of our lives.  I hope the blog does some good in the world.  And that you find it helpful for your life.

If you do, would you consider making a special donation to its work?  The blog is a conduit of resources.   Every donation goes directly to help those in need.  There is no overhead.  Every dime goes straight to important charities.   Last year on the blog we raised $137,000.   For me, this is amazing.  When I started the blog, I had the idea that maybe it would raise $20,000 a year.  Wrong.  And I’m glad I was wrong.  If that was the level we were working at, I would have given up the venture years ago, as too hard and time consuming.  But at the level we’re working at now, I am driven to keep on, and plan on keeping on.  My goal for this year is $150,000.  It’s possible, but it will require donations.  Would you be willing to make one?

It’s easy to donate.  Just click the Donate tab on the landing page, when you first arrive to the site.   Think about it.   It’s a way to express your own thankfulness (one of a thousand ways, and a minor way, but still a way); it helps keep the blog health and thriving and growing; and most important it provides desperately needed funds for those in desperate need.

Many thanks to everyone for your ongoing support of our work.  If there is any way I can make the blog better, do let me know.   In the meantime, may we all be increasingly thankful as we head deeper into the Thanksgiving season.