This Thanksgiving day was not a typical one for our family, though it will likely go down in the books as most memorable. This is the second year that our family has not gone back to New Jersey to celebrate with our parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. However, we were invited to celebrate with another family in town who has no family nearby. They also invited another family for the occasion.
Due to the fact that we had 21 people present, we chose to do dinner buffet style. This worked great. We gathered at the table and began our Thanksgiving event by giving thanks to the Lord. We then proceeded to get the children situated with their plates of food before serving ourselves. I asked my husband to tend to this matter so that I could nurse our darling infant who was also hungry at this point.
Now, my handsome husband looked out the window and said, "Hey look! There's a cow coming up your driveway." That is where a very normal Thanksgiving meal turned into something like a National Lampoons Thanksgiving meal. :D You see, there truly was a calf meandering up the driveway. At this point, the woman of the house also noted that there were some deer grazing in the field across the street. This may not mean a lot to city folks, but for those of us in the country, Thanksgiving day is a great day for hunters (and for those of us desiring to fill our freezers with some virtually free meat ;). So...while the adults are filling up their plates, the woman of the house called the neighbor to wish him Happy Thanksgiving and to inform him that he had a calf on the loose. As the rest of us are sitting down at the table with our delicious food-filled plates, we hear said woman asking for permission to shoot the deer...yes, you heard correctly...shoot the deer. We're starting to think venison steaks now folks. Returning to the table, our woman says nonchalantly, "He said we can shoot the deer."
We all take a few bites of food and deliberate...should we really interrupt our meal to shoot these deer? Shooting these deer requires retrieval and a whole host of other things most would not want to think about while enjoying a nice meal. The discussion turns to who the shooters would be...there are three men, one of which has already shot his allowed deer for the day and another who has not brought his gun. Mr. Already-Shot-A-Deer offers to lend Mr. Gunless his weapon of choice. Now, I have been told that borrowing a man's gun is like borrowing his underwear; it isn't something men like to do, but they'll do it in extreme situations. Is this situation extreme enough? Apparently so because as Mr. Have-A-Gun-Haven't-Had-A-Deer-Yet-Today gets his weapon, Mr. Gunless chooses to borrow the gun of Mr. Already-Shot-A-Deer becoming Mr. Underwear Man. Perhaps we're witnessing something akin to women going to the bathroom together; it just can't be done alone.
Anyway, leaving our plates and the delightful aroma of turkey, we turn our minds toward the venison across the field and head outdoors. Our men alert the neighbors who are outdoors and head across the quiet country road. It must have been quite a spectacle for the cows grazing next to the fence; 21 people pouring out of a house like that. Our guys aim their guns using the fence posts for stability, and "BANG!" the deer take off running. A deer drops. Mr. Underwear Man is still deciding whether or not to take a shot; the deer are awfully small, and he's already shot a small one this season. He decides not to take a shot, and we all return to the cozy warm house, the aroma of turkey, and almost cold dinner. The men eat the remains of their dinner rather hastily as the cows give thanks that we are not as excited about and dedicated to beef steaks as we are venison steaks. (If only they knew it was really loyalty to our neighbors that kept them alive that day.)
So...our men take all but the youngest of the children on a deer retrieval expedition while the ladies enjoy perhaps the quietest Thanksgiving dinner they've ever had, some delightful conversation, and a lot of laughter at recalling the progression of events of the evening. It truly was a night of Thanksgiving for all of God's provision for us including the gifts of friendship, food, laughter, and most of all His Son who saves us and gives us the common ground to enjoy fellowship together. Being part of the family of God is such a wonderful blessing and being with His family is very much like being with our very own family. There is a sweetness to fellowship with other believers that is like no other this side of heaven. It is a foretaste of the fellowship that we who are called will one day enjoy with our Creator God and Savior for all eternity. Praise His name!
How was your Thanksgiving?