Written by member Brandi M, with contributions.
When you say “thankful” this time of year it usually conjures up images of black and white-clad pilgrims and plump turkeys. Vegetarians might imagine a horn of plenty stuffed with fruits and veggies. Still others think forward to the next big holiday and imagine their halls all decked out and the major shopping event that will happen in a few days.
What does it mean to truly be thankful for our food?
In America we have largely enjoyed abundance, most of us, for all of our lives. Such abundance that people in third world countries never even dream about. We may eat more meat in one meal than many eat in a month’s time. Really? Yes, really.
Do we ever really sit and ponder what it means to be thankful for our food?
Trace the necessary path for your food. In order for you to eat something, someone (perhaps yourself) had to prepare it. Someone had to buy it. Someone else had to grow it and prepare it for you to buy. There was
someone or more than one who had to earn the money to purchase the food. The list can go on and on. In that list we also find our buying club, the varied individuals and families that come together with a common goal of bringing wholesome foods to the area, with affordable prices.
In our diverse group, being thankful has various meanings, manifestations and realities. With permission, I will share some with you here.
About a year ago I was diagnosed with Celiacs disease, after many years of mysterious ailments I was grateful to have a diagnoses but confused how to move forward with this new information. After much research and talking with friends with same or similar food restrictions I changed almost everything regarding my diet. I know follow a gluten-free diet in combination with the type O blood type diet. I am very grateful for my local food cooperative as well as friends that have assisted with this journey. I am grateful for the support of my family who do not always understand but go with it anyway. I still have a way to go in reaching my goal of living without medication and only using food as my primary medicine but I have a good start. ~Jennifer C.
Being thankful for my food, What does it mean to me? Thanking God first for the filling of my families bellies…no matter if it is a bowl of rice or a seven course meal. Having the ability and freedom to raise chickens, grow my own garden and drink raw milk (for now). Having options outside of the big box store. I am thankful that I still have food choice and freedoms and folks willing to fight to keep them for me. I am thankful that I can rest assured that even sparrows are taken care of by God and so shall I be. ~Carolyn S.
Being thankful for our food means to me that I acknowledge there is a Higher Power than myself and all the work and energy put into growing, harvesting, hunting, gathering is a gift from God, because of His love for His children. I am grateful for our buying club and all the wonderful people in it who are so helpful with information to guide us in our food choices that improve the life and health of our families and all the work that keeps our club alive. I am also grateful for the knowledge and understanding of what is going on in this world that helps us make, not only the right food choices for the health of our bodies, but that we can understand our spiritual needs and can help us make the right choices for our spiritual growth, which is infinitely more important than our physical well-being. I am grateful that we live in a country where we have so many freedoms and I pray that we don’t lose them. ~Margaret G.
I am thankful for the privilege of living on a farm in a family who loves to produce food. My son and mother in law raise beautiful organic vegetables, I enjoy milking cows, and raising chickens for eggs and meat. We also raise heritage pigs for pork and a beef each year. Everyone in the family pitches in to help in one way or another. It is a blessing to be able to do this and I am quite aware that our family is in the minority of people who are in a position to be able to raise our own food. With our modern-day lifestyle, there are foods that we enjoy but cannot or choose not to raise on the farm. Some years we have crop failures or other issues that impact the availability of certain foods. For these items I am extremely grateful to have a natural foods buying club (SEKBC) available in our area. The members of the club band together to pool our resources to purchase foods such as organic grains, beans, snack foods and other products in large enough quantities from wholesalers to be able to bring the prices down to a manageable level for our budget. The club also provides a social setting to find other people interested in healthy lifestyles. Food is necessary for life and I am grateful that God has provided it bountifully for our family through the work of our hands on the farm and through the ability to purchase organic foods from the SEKBC. ~Deanna M.
My own reality of being thankful for my food lies with my Creator. I have been so extremely blessed in my life, both with my needs met and those little “extra” blessings that I cannot begin to express my gratitude sufficiently. I do extend my thanks to each SEK Buying Club member, for without you, we wouldn’t have that choice. I realize that it takes every one of us to make this happen and your contribution does not go unnoticed.