This year I enjoyed a Thanksgiving meal with the Semenov family again. It isn’t my first but as always it was highly meaningful. If back during my time in the Cold War someone would have told me that the world I am living is full of such marvelous changes to the extent that I would one day be celebrating Thanksgiving with Russians from Ukraine, well I would have found that to be outrageously entertaining.
Over the past couple of years as the family has gotten to know me and something of my history, they made it a priority that I should be introduced to a member of their family who I had not yet met. His name is Peter. I call him Peter the Great. During his time in the Cold War she served as a Soldier assigned to the Strategic Rocket Forces of the Soviet Union. He was part of the security detail that deployed with mobile SS20 launchers. We discussed the things we both played a part in and as I marveled as to how it was that this Thanksgiving that we could be enjoying our meal together he said that it is no surprise to him how such things can happen. “I always knew that God has never wanted War between our people. Every time we would have a major alert to prepare for War, our equipment would break and there was nothing we could do. God made sure of that. No matter what the politicians say, it is God’s will that is done”.
He insisted that I sit next to him at the table. We talked nonstop. Today was a big day for Peter the Great. Today he learned that in a few months he is going to have a beautiful Grandson coming into this world. “It is only by the Grace of God that my Grandson will be an American”.
It is only by the Grace of God that I am able to call these people my family.
That is quite a lot for us to be thankful for.