Thanksgiving Day offers us a pause in life to reflect on gratitude. It is a long-held practice with the hopes that it will never fade. The art of gratitude is as perennial as the stars. Being thankful can be effortless with respect to what is working out for us. But what about that which is not working out for us such as being challenged by relationships?

Every individual in each and every family makes what some may call mistakes because of our expectations. We hurt each other, we offend each other, intentionally or not; and, if we are honest we do it more than we care to say. Boundaries are crossed and anger results. We then at times hold on to that precious anger should we dare deny our pride.

Perhaps restoring a peaceful tone in a spirit of gentleness (Gal.), we can recognize in another that which resembles our very selves. We are not so different from the person with whom we are angry. Just look at those who are angry with us! Reflecting on forgiveness may be just what we need to recognize our own part in hurt feelings. It is just one step toward peace and the celebration of another. Self discovery is something to be thankful for as well as something that can lead to a more peaceful world, but we must begin at home. If American history, skewed though it may be, speaks to anything, it is the coming together of peoples with different beliefs, traditions, and personalities to reflect on that long-held practice we call thankfulness.