Holidays and food—they just go together. This though comes to mind every time I’m invited to a holiday celebration that involves lots of food—and don’t they all? It’s called “Michael’s Thanksgiving Day Prayer” but it might just as well be called “Everyone’s Christmas Prayer,” or “The Holiday Miracle We Pray For That We Will Not Be Given.” Enjoy!
“Michael’s Thanksgiving Day Prayer” – Abstinence
It was finally pie time. So many pies! So many flavors! So many decisions! Pie with whipped cream? Pie with ice cream? “Maybe just a little of both,” I heard someone say. The turkey and rolls started to make their way back out onto the counter, something to balance out all that pie I suppose. “Hey, who brought the eggnog and 7-Up?” questioned one of the uncles with great excitement!
The Thanksgiving Day sun was setting. The cousins were starting to get a little wound up. My grown children, the parents, were starting to say things like, “Stop! Remember we don’t run in Grandma’s house!” and “No you may not have a fourth piece of pie!” In our family, generally speaking, the later it gets the more energy the children have. With 17 children and 21 adults we were almost outnumbered and it was time to either mesmerize them by playing The Santa Clause 1, 2, 3, and 4 videos, or for the adults to gather up all the energizer turkeys and head toward home for a long post-pie nap.
I stood at the kitchen sink visiting with my brother. “Before we leave,” he said, “I’ve got a story to tell you: This morning before driving down to your house for dinner, I gathered everyone for family prayer. I called on Michael (age 14) to pray for the family and this is what he prayed, ‘Please bless us that we will be able to eat as much as possible without getting sick.’”
We had a good laugh. I’ve prayed that prayer myself a thousand times. I’ve been so certain Heavenly Father would hear my prayer and grant me my wish that I’ve gone ahead and put Him to the test. Time and time again I have hoped for a negligible outcome as I’ve taken in more food and more calories than my body has the capacity to deal with in a healthy way only to be shocked at the after pains. Without exception I felt sick not only physically, but also emotionally and spiritually.
I don’t think you have to be a compulsive eater to relate to Michael’s prayer. In many Addiction Recovery Meetings I’ve heard participants say, “Hi, I’m _____ and I’m addicted to MORE.” It doesn’t seem to matter if our destructive practices center around the computer, the bar, the refrigerator, the mall, or the neighborhood pharmacy, our prayer has been much like Michael’s Thanksgiving Day request. “Dear Heavenly Father, please, just this time, grant me the miracle of indulging without consequence.”
This year I am happy to be a compulsive eater who is a grateful Thanksgiving dinner survivor, ninety-seven pounds down from my top weight, but I certainly have not finished my course work on the subject of cause and effect. I had to smile at the Lord’s sense of humor the other night. I started developing this little piece of writing late in the evening. Before climbing into the covers and without thought of what I had just finished writing, I knelt at the foot of my bed and said, “Dear Heavenly Father, once again I’ve stayed up much too late. I know I should have been in bed a long time ago, but please bless me with the ability to wake up early, feeling great, and with energy to accomplish good things in the morning.” As I whispered these words Heavenward I could almost see the corners of the Lord’s mouth turn up just a bit, and with a twinkle in his eye, and His brows slightly raised. He seemed to whisper back, “Oh, I see Nannette, might you be asking for the miracle of indulging without consequence? It reminds me a of the Thanksgiving prayer of a little boy I know, ‘Please bless us that we will be able to eat as much as possible without getting sick?’”
By Nannette W.
Posted Monday, December 7, 2009
From Nannette’s Christmas Archives Re-posted December 20, 2011
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