Pumpkin Pie for Breakfast

Another amazing photo popped into my view upon waking Thanksgiving morning.  My famous photographer friend of fifty years posted a picture from Zion National Park called “The Watchman.”  He made reference to Ezekiel and it inspired me to start right there for a morning of Thanksgiving with the King.

MarkShunkPhotography.com "The Watchman"

The Back Story

Mark’s commentary to accompany his brilliant photography is the backstory to the extraordinary nature he captures.  Our friendship started in high school Physics class where we whispered stories which were much more tantalizing than the physics lecture.  Who knew we would both come to learn the very nature of physics as we explored the world and the effects of matter, motion and energy.  Mark photographs it and I am simply a force of nature in my quirky, eclectic way.

Not a Physics Story

This is not a story about physics, but rather how a person can draw inspiration and direction from the stories of another.  It simply started as all my stories do, a long-winded tale of how I finally get to the point of the matter.  We make long stops along the way to in an attempt to explain the fullness of human interaction.

Alone for the Holiday

I have a tradition of spending holidays alone.  Some feel sorry for me.  Some cannot imagine what is wrong with me. Others are happy they don’t have to see me, but nevertheless, I am not really alone, nor am I lonely.  I am alone with the King.  My best time with the Lord comes on holidays.

Let’s see what Ezekiel has to say.  Seemed a good time to build a fire and enjoy a Thanksgiving breakfast with a slice of pumpkin pie that was out of the oven at 10:30 pm last night.  Coffee with a side of homemade eggnog completed the setup.

Don’t Want to Hear It

Ezekiel was a street preacher who God anointed as a prophet and as a “Watchman” warning of the impending destruction of Jerusalem.  No one wants to hear from a prophet as they are full of news no one wants to hear.  We can’t possibly rejoice over God’s judgement over idolatry, rebellion and even something as non-compelling as indifference.  Surely, we are allowed some indifference.

Do Something God

There was a message for me in this study.  I am deeply saddened by the unending suffering of refugees and I continually ask God to do something.  I know the personal stories of several in Africa.  The central theme of what makes a person become a refugee goes back to the beginning of time or at least a few months after.  People just flat out became evil.  They want what they want and they get rid of anyone who gets in their way.  Bullets, rape and torture are some of the tools of persuasion.

Are You Indifferent?

The people of the day thought God was weak not to defend Jerusalem.  God allowed the 70 years of exile in Babylon as the punishment of their sins.  Ezekiel showed me the people in exile had lost their perspective of God’s purpose and presence.  You could say they were indifferent. In spite of captivity, God’s sovereign strength prevails.  He will judge his enemies and restore his true people. Sometimes the “true people” those whose hearts belong to God, get caught in the cross fire and are collateral damage as they flee their homes and literally die away in unimaginable human conditions, such as life in a concentration camp, I mean a refugee camp.

The Joy of Being Alone on Thanksgiving

As I reflect on the human condition, on this day of Thanksgiving, much has been revealed to me.  We cannot always control the bubble in which we live.  Most of us are bearing the consequences of sin, perhaps our own or as a result of someone else.  We can however, choose our perspective.  We are completely free to be thankful.

This story was going to be about the joys of being alone on Thanksgiving, and it still can be, but God often takes us down a winding path to answer some things which perplex us and make our hearts break.

Thankful

Thank you Mark for photographing “The Watchman” and sharing Ezekiel with us today. God made us from the dust of the ground, yet He chooses to place within us His life and breath if we trust him with our lives.  When we do that, He asks us to serve Him by serving others.  I am thankful I had just enough stamina to make three turkeys so I could hoard the bones and the drippings and have somewhere to send the meat!  I am thankful I can cook.  Thanksgiving fare is my favorite and I have enjoyed many Thanksgivings in amazingly elegant hotels and sampled some of the finest foods but nothing compares to perfecting a moist turkey, the best most spicy gravy from pan drippings, dressing full of sage and thyme and pumpkin pie with extra pumpkin spice.

Be Still and Know

In the stillness of my home on Thanksgiving morning, I can light a fire, light my scrawny Florida pine tree, turn on my favorite playlist, sip a coffee and listen intently to what God wants to say.  God told Ezekiel to illustrate his messages with dramatic lessons.  I must have innately known this as my stories and my actions are rather dramatic lessons of how we can serve others.  Ezekiel laid on his side for 390 days during which he could eat only one meal a day cooked over a manure fire.  Makes my Five Cows story look tame. 

Polly Riddell writing as G. Polly Jordan

I am thankful I thrive alone.  Everywhere I look, there is something to be thankful for.