My wife is sitting in our living room watching a Christmas movie on the Hallmark Chanel, and I just walked in from feeding our horses. We have a few horses. And for right now, since there has been a sever weather warning issued, they are undercover in our barn.
Our barn is not huge. I've never had the funds for anything huge in my life. I've always been content with what I've built and worked for. And frankly, I thought about that walking back to our house tonight. I looked at our small barn, really just a little more than a large stable instead of a barn. And I looked at the chewed boards still not replaced. I looked at each horse munching away.
I looked and shock my head in disbelief. You see, though I've never had a lot of funds, I found that I was wrong when I was thinking that I haven't had anything huge. Frankly, I've had a lifetime of huge.
Moving over to sit in a wooden chair near our fire pit. I sat for a few minutes under tonight's starry sky with the crisp wind shaking the trees, and smiled at all I have. And no, I'm not talking about having horses, a piece of property in the hill country, or a barn that my dad, and I and my brothers and my nephews built.
I'm talking about my wonderful wife, her parents and my mom, my brothers and sisters, my many nieces and nephews and their wonderful children. Yes, I'm talking about God's blessings.
I lost my older brother earlier this month, and I'm fine now with him being out of pain. I feel blessed. Yes, I feel thankful to God that we were able to become closer over the last 15 years. While the pain is there, I understand that us becoming close friends and not merely brothers was something that God said was about time. And while, I'm thankful for my things, I'm truly grateful to God for giving me the time with my brother that he did.
And since tomorrow is Thanksgiving, I thank God for filling my life with blessings that I never thought possible. Blessings that I never thought I was worthy of.
I thank God everyday that I have the wife that I do. For me, she is my best friend, my companion, my rock, my soul, my strength when I can't find it, my sanity in a world that makes me nuts at times.
Dear Lord, I sometimes wonder how she puts up with me and my eccentricities. Yes, my love of history and the past, my past, our past, the Old West, the similarities of the Cowboy Code to my Marine Ethos. Yes, my belief that American Cowboys and U.S. Marines share core values of honor, courage, and commitment. A belief that means living a life where integrity, loyalty, honor, selflessness, and courage is one's guide.
Yes, she puts up with my belief that fairness can be real and people need to work to be good. And yes, I love good deeds and good people, great parents and needy horses. And I will always help a neighbor, especially if he and she has already tried to help themself.
And frankly, it is no wonder that she became a Master Gardener. Patients and nurturing is obviously her strong suit. Yes, she would have been a great farmer simply because she loves the land and nurtures that which she plants. And whether it's her vegetable garden or the flowers and such that she plants at our front door, she digs the earth, adds what's needed and waits for favorable results. Yes indeed, I thank God everyday that I have the wife that I do.
So while I'm thankful to God for my mom's good health, and while I'm thankful that the rest of my family is not giving in and fighting to keep the devil at bay, I thank God that my friends are good and tough and real.
I'm thankful for the friendships that have come my way, the camaraderie of my brother and sister Vets at our American Legion Post, the fondness I have for my wonderful neighbors, this good place called Glencoe where I call home.
My wife told me this tonight, it is something she has on a piece of art, it reads, "The secret to having it all is believing that you already do."
Yes, she's right. Looking around at what I've weathered, both the trails and trials, both the heartache and the love. And yes, I'm thankful to God for my having a lifetime of huge blessings.
I pray that Gods grants you and yours huge blessings.