November is Thanksgiving month. How awesome is that! Thanksgiving also happens to be my all-time favorite holiday. While I enjoy the food and family fellowship as much as the next guy, that is not why I love Thanksgiving so much. The reason it is my favorite holiday is because it is the time of year that we must stop and think about what it is that we are thankful for. It is not about what I am going to get, but it is about what has already been done for me.
As I stop to ponder on this last year since the previous Thanksgiving holiday, so much has taken place for me to give thanks. I’d like to take the opportunity this month to share a few things that I am personally thankful for.
It has been one year ago since God saw fit to bring our family to Tomah, Wisconsin, more specifically, Tomah Baptist Church. People ask me often if I like Tomah? The answer is always a most resounding, “Yes, we love it!” But as I think about that answer, and while it is true, it is the relationships that we have been able to foster in Tomah Baptist Church that allows us to answer that way. We could not be more thankful to the Lord for bringing us to such a loving and caring congregation of people. To feel at home in a church congregation from the very first day is most rewarding.
Over the last four years our lives as a family have changed so much as well, but not as much as they have over the last year. Chloe graduated from college. Asher graduated from high school. Justus turned 16. Things just keep changing, but we are thankful in the midst of the changes. We are very thankful to the Lord for expanding our family again this year as Chloe and Andrew were married. Then in September our family expanded once again as Abbie and Paul had our first grandchild, Elliot. Grandchildren are pretty amazing I must say!
The Lord has been so good to us as a family and as a church family as well. Unexpected change is rarely easy. I am most thankful for the spirit of our congregation as you have had to endure a myriad of changes over the last two years. Your spirit of accommodation, gentleness, and perseverance is not only to be commended, but something that we should all be thankful for. Because of this spirit, I can join the Apostle Paul as he penned the words to the church at Colosse and wrote, “We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ of you in our prayers.” Colossians 1:3
With all that being said, I want to simply say to our congregation at Tomah Baptist Church: Thank you!
Pastor Aaron Smith