Today is a very special day across the United States, at U.S. Military bases and diplomatic posts and by expats who are living in other nations.
In the last few decades, some academics have tried to take away the true meaning of it by calling into questions the founding of our nation. Their continued march toward a completely secular society may succeed in school books and in classrooms, but it they will never be able to take from the hearts and minds of grateful people who remember that it is God’s blessings that have made this nation great.
Our forefathers had a clear vision of what was necessary for a prosperous nation that would be a blessing to the world and not a curse. They knew that a reliance on the Creator of this universe was an absolute necessity. As with the attempt to change the meaning of this holiday in the minds of our citizenry, revisionist historians have tried to re-write the history, the motives and even the character of those brave souls who were looking for freedom. Freedom to practice their own faith in God without the obstruction of human governments and controlling religious leaders. Freedom of conscience and even the freedom to disagree without fear of reprisal.
In 1621, the colonists at Plymouth and the Wampanoag Indians celebrated the harvest with a feast, and that event became a tradition that has continued until today. In 1863, in the midst of the nightmare called the Civil War (or as southerners call it, “the war of Northern aggression) President Abraham Lincoln signed a proclamation that a special day of Thanksgiving should be held each November.
Depending on the philosophical bent of those who write and teach history, you can read just about any theory you want, but the truth is this: We are a blessed nation. A nation that is very, very young in comparison to other nations, but a nation where a vast majority of us who still choose to be thankful or God’s blessings.
Yes, there will be football games, parades and the madness of shopping, but we will gather…we will share a meal that will begin with a prayer, people will serve the homeless, the poor and less fortunate people. Men and women will serve on foreign soil to guarantee that our freedoms continue, and in our nation, firefighters, law enforcement officers, doctors and nurses and other technicians will work long hours to serve all of us. They will eat dinners that are reheated in microwaves in order to maintain domestic tranquility.
Yes, we are a blessed people. A blessed nation. And the Creator of everything loves us with an everlasting love. For these blessings, and too many others to name in this special I am thankful.
God bless you,