Give thanks:
This year is almost over!

A Thanksgiving Perspective from Concrete Decor
Bent Mikkelsen shares his Thanksgiving perspective for not only his life but for the decorative concrete industry as well.

Dear Decorative Concrete Enthusiasts,

Please allow me to share a little Thanksgiving perspective:

Thank goodness for Thanksgiving! That’s a bit of an overstatement, wouldn’t you say?

I mean, WOW! What more could 2020 have up its sleeve? I’m just thankful the year is almost over. Riots, the media, a pandemic, social distancing, schooling from home, defunding police, shooting rampages, the elections…. Are you having the same bad dream?

Respectfully, that’s a valid way of looking at this life as we know it today. I’d like to suggest another that bears consideration.

As U.S. citizens, I think our country gives to its own according to what each of us puts into it. However, I think about the time and resources I’ve invested in creating an industry resource like Concrete Decor. I’d say the challenges outweigh the benefits. When something like this pandemic occurs, I’m frantically tightening the belt at home while preparing for company turbulence. Conversely, when business thrives, I feel glad to have weathered the storm.

I now know that challenging times are always looming… sometimes without warning. This makes it that much more crucial to plan for these eventualities. While I don’t always appreciate challenging times, I recognize without them I’d never consider their short-term effects on long-range plans. I also hate to admit that I wouldn’t think so much about the importance of others to my success. Without challenges, we’d find ourselves void of the ability to appreciate any good that comes from those around us.

I grew up attending Sunday school at a Lutheran church. When I started college, I met someone who conveyed a surprisingly nonacademic perspective on Christianity. What? Salvation is not work oriented.

Celebrate unconditional love

As was shared, it seemed reasonable to believe if God existed and equipped me to make my own decisions, it also meant I was free to live a life dependent upon Him. Despite growing up afraid to depend on anyone but myself, a measure of fatigue came with it associated with devising ways to protect myself. Along with this came a measure of frustration because of expectations that others could unknowingly ever meet.

Life has shown me that learning to accept God’s unconditional love makes it hard to get angry at others. It also makes it hard to accept circumstances I may find myself in without feeling a bit embarrassed. I’ve learned to be grateful for good times and rough times. So, I must ask myself: what makes today’s circumstances an exception?

I share this Thanksgiving perspective with you now because too often I neglect telling others about this personal aspect. And even more often, I neglect to thank the people who have simply chosen to be my friends. A God of love, if you choose to think of Him that way, means we too can unconditionally love others. We really don’t need much of anything in exchange because God’s love is sufficient.

As the creator of heaven and Earth, God also has dominion over all things (Romans 8: 38-39). Considering the insurmountable challenges presented this year, we can start to realize how much greater God’s love is for us.

Long ago, I discovered learning a trade depended entirely on a community of experts willing to teach me their skills. College wasn’t much different. Neither is the life of a Christian. In fact, God calls us to fellowship with one another continuously. He knows how easy it is for his children to become self-dependent.

Yes, that’s right. We get stuck on taking care of ourselves instead of thinking about the needs of others. Maybe this is what celebrating Thanksgiving is about.

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