In this secular day and age, when most people believe that everything they have and all they are is due solely to their own industriousness and even good luck, do we fully realize God’s blessings to us? If we took an inventory today, would we be surprised at all He has done for us?
Although the American concept of Thanksgiving developed in the New England colonies, its roots can actually be traced back to the other side of the Atlantic. Both the Separatists who came over on the Mayflower and the Puritans who arrived soon after brought with them a tradition of holidays, one in particular of celebrations to thank God for His blessings.
In fact, the annual celebration of the harvest and its bounty actually falls under a category of festivals that spans cultures, continents and millennia.
In ancient times, the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans feasted and paid tribute to their gods after the fall harvest. Thanksgiving also bears a resemblance to the ancient Jewish harvest festival of Sukkot.
Finally, historians have noted that Native Americans themselves had a rich tradition of commemorating the fall harvest with feasting and merrymaking long before Europeans set foot on their shores. This would certainly account for getting together with the European setters for the first Thanksgiving.
The reason for the tradition of All these feasts was to thank God in times of plenty. So the $64 million question of the day is, how do we define the term “plenty”?
Do we really have an accurate inventory of our blessings? Or are there many things in our lives which we take for granted, not necessarily seeing as blessings, but simply recompense for our own hard work.
In 1620, when the first pilgrims landed, they would have had a very acute sense of what it meant to give thanks for God’s bounty, with only half of their peers living to see their first New England spring. They would have been more keenly conscious of their complete dependence on the divine providence of a Supreme Being, and their need to show Him appreciation
Perhaps you do understand where God has blest you. Perhaps you have recently come through a life threatening illness, or have experienced some other good news, which you attribute to God’s goodness..
But let us all take an even closer inventory. For there are myriads of little things in our lives which we overlook on a daily basis, and for which we may not always stop to give Him thanks.
The greatest gift God has given us is the Gift of Life itself; which, if you are reading this right now, you have already received this bounty. Taking into account the almost 60 million human lives snuffed out through the violence of abortion, those of us who made the cut, should be very thankful indeed; realizing that our life should be lived with a purpose of thanksgiving.
“Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving”
All of us at Lake County Right to Life.