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Thanksgiving Grace (Guest Blogger)

sdluks_032405_1088_100.jpgThis Thanksgiving, I received the most beautiful letter from my friend, Susan Luks. Most of you know of her as a fiberartist, a creator of fabrics and garments. However, she is a most wonderful writer as well. She sent this letter to her friends, and I asked to share it with you here. Please visit her website and see her visual delights as well as these artful words: http://sdluks.com

Thanksgiving 2006

Thanksgiving eve… tonight I was thinking that when we say grace at my mother’s Thanksgiving table, we will say, “bless us, oh lord, for these thy gifts, which we are about to receive from thy bounty…” and I will think for the 9 k’zillionth time in my life: who wrote these words? And then in an instant I will consider the value of ritual, but quickly veer off into the mind space of wanting to be the one who gets to write grace. My mind wander will carry me to a particular point of view, a neighborhood of my mind, where I understand that I am always in the midst of writing grace, always in the midst of witnessing grace, and always in the midst of receiving grace.

When I say that, I am thinking of all the varied and interesting people who populate my world. I am thinking of the incredible singularities of each of you. I am thinking of how many kindnesses I have been dealt over the year, over a decade, over a lifetime. I am thinking of how much I appreciate your time, your presence, and your indulgence of my idiosyncratic heart. I am thinking that this is grace.

What I want to say in thanks giving, in my version of grace, is singular to each of you. You, collectively, will have to believe me that it’s a long list, a collection of the smallest seemingly unrelated and meaningless items, but not unrelated and meaningless to me. I see that what I value most is just this: life lived in paragraphs, sometimes sentences, occasionally single words, and often wordless actions.

I will give you some examples: Nichol popped his head into my office, taking in my desk littered with paper, and said, “can I get you a cup of tea, Mom?” Grace. Mike bought Jacob a guitar so he could learn to play. Grace. My mom called after a trying day to allow me to rant. Grace. Jakes smiled at me as I said “goodnight, sweet dreams.” Grace. Josh joked. Grace. Winalee danced. Grace. Julie and I had breakfast. Grace. You sent me a letter. Grace. You came to dinner and sat and talked. Grace. You showed up at my art show. Grace. You showed my boys corners of the world I can’t bring to them, a baseball game, football game, D&D, how to camp, to fish, to be boys. Grace. You share your talents, your stories, your homes, and your time with me and mine. Grace. Grace. Grace.

On this Thanksgiving when I say grace with my family before the meal, “bless us, oh lord for these thy gifts…” the ritual for me will not be as small as the words, it will be as big as the collective actions of all of you and yours and me and mine. Spoken or not, it will be as big as the collective grace in the world. My wish for you is to find the same at your table.

With a bursting heart,


Susan, thank you for bestowing your own grace on us today. Friends, remember that Susan wrote this (and therefore owns the copyrights for its use) and if you wish to quote her it would be kind to ask first: Susan AT SDLuks DOT com

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