Following up from Operation Thanksgiving Turkey. My friend Ken (who started the operation) received the below letter this week. It is from one of the 286 recipients of the turkey expressing his appreciation. The card he received was from my daughter (yes I am proud of her :-)).
December 3, 2009
Sometimes you don’t feel particularly “needy:’ But over time, things that uplift your soul tend to slip away.
With the children grown and scattered, holidays are one of those things.
Christmas decorating for the past ten years consists of digging the wreath out of the storage room and hanging it on the front door. All done!
Thanksgiving is even worse. Maybe we go out to a little nearby restaurant and have some turkey. Maybe not.
As my wife’s vision deteriorates, she’s made the painful decision to hang up her car keys. Cooking also has become a chore for her.
Bless her heart, she has borne up bravely as I try to teach myself to cook. But if I were the one married to me I’d divorce myself.
Lots of sandwiches. Cheerios sound good for supper tonight? Doggie bags from the restaurant will feed us for two days! When I cook, the smoke alarm indicates the meat is done.
Enter Angel Food.
I don’t even remember where I heard of Angel Food, but October was our first Signature Box. We liked it so much, we ordered another for November and a Senior Meals to boot.
Saturday. November 21, I arrive to pick up, Naturally I go to the wrong table. The one I stop at is where you sign up for Thanksgiving Dinner … delivered!
Mama didn’t raise no dumb puppies! How much? Free? Sign me up!
Now here is where expectation departs from reality. What I envisioned was a plastic plate with some sliced turkey, a scoop of mashed potatoes, stuffing, maybe some green beans. Maybe even some cranberry sauce. Ready to pop into the microwave. I would have been happy and pleased. I know my wife would have been thrilled she didn’t have to eat my cooking.
Late delivery OK – say eight or nine? Yes ma’am, that’ll be fine. Wednesday night. A phone call. Were running late. No problem, I never go to bed before 1 a.m.
Todd and his son, Chris, arrived shortly before midnight. The guys have been out delivering all day! Talk about above and beyond the call of duty! But the gifts they were bearing drove out all logical thought. I was stunned! A whole turkey! Smoked yet! And all the fixins – corn, beans, stuffing, cranberry sauce and a whole pumpkin pie! I’ve never had a smoked turkey in my life! It was delicious!
In addition were two little presents. One was a New Testament. Always welcome. Always needed. Always ready to dispense inspiration and wisdom. Not too surprising, though – it’s a Baptist Church after all!
The other present was a simple card. “Hope you have a great Thanksgiving. Remember Jesus loves you!” and signed Alyssa:’ Below was a drawing of a little smiling turkey, saying “gobble!”
Tears fell unashamed from my eyes.
I could see clearly Alyssa and her friends sitting at a table making card after card for people they didn’t know and would never meet.
This leads to a vision of hundreds of turkeys being prepared by your church family. Boxes and boxes of fixins being cheerfully parceled out. The thought staggers the imagination.
A church event. A family event. Young and old pitching in and working late to prepare a Thanksgiving feast for nameless and faceless people … out there.
You have cast your cornbread stuffing upon the waters. And it has filled my grateful heart.
Alyssa, you and your friends at First Baptist Church of Fort Mill were my blessing this Thanksgiving.
May you and your church family receive God’s blessings in abundance this Christmas season. And may your hearts be filled with the knowledge that your efforts have reached out and the hearts of others.
In deep appreciation,
Take time this Christmas season to help someone out. Give some change to the Salvation Army bell ringer. Send a card. It is amazing what a turkey, fixins and a card can do for someone and how much it can help out.
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