A Story of Thanks

The year 2020 will be well remembered by the McCandless family — yet not in the shiniest of terms. It has been filled with a diagnosis of breast cancer for my spouse, followed by treatment over six months and now recovery and strengthening. The thankful part of that scenario is that by working from home, I was able to continue to engage and complete work virtually. I was also able to be present for my spouse during her treatment and provide physical and emotional support as she was at home. For that, I am very grateful. 

I am also grateful for the prayers so many of my team members and friends provided during our journey and their consistent support. The medical staff at The Start Center and Methodist Hospital gave us quality treatment and support along the way.

I am grateful for the sharing that many of you have done, as I have heard your stories of the challenges during COVID-19 of invasive diseases and the social changes that have shaken foundations within our nation and world. It is through our sharing that we come to know one another heart-to-heart, have compassion for one another, and become community that reflects God’s Kingdom. I am grateful for each of you allowing me to be part of your spiritual journey, as we face together the complexities of life.

I am grateful for my family, First United Methodist Church Kerrville, Peterson Hospice, and especially my siblings as my mom succumbed to pancreatic cancer at home where we could visit with her, comfort her, and celebrate life lived well. It is difficult to lose a parent, yet to see God’s presence and be sustained by God’s caring people was a blessing and another event for which I am grateful.

God has accompanied me during this year and reminded me of God’s sustaining power to face the future unafraid. Thanksgiving 2020 will be filled with less food and people in one place than in years past, yet it will be celebrated with a deeper sense of gratitude than many that have preceded it. May you remember this year and find those people and events for which you are thankful. Especially, I give thanks for God and God’s love always for all of God’s children.