Our Voice

Thanksgiving

We the people so privileged to live in America have so much to be thankful for.  God has allowed us to live in the greatest nation in human history, in my opinion.  How grateful we should be.  Thanks be unto God for His incredible gifts to mankind.

There are so many things to be thankful for.  And we should approach this wonderful time of year with gratitude and Thanksgiving Day, and Thanksgiving week, and in fact all year long, we should:

GIVE THANKS

And you are thankful are you not my fellow Americans, for so much, so much that you have, so many opportunities that you have and the life which God has given you to lead.  You are thankful and grateful, are you not?

Our forefathers, as they established America one-of-a-kind, the pilgrims and others, did exactly that:

THEY GAVE THANKS OVER AND AGAIN

Those who came first to America brought with them a deeply rooted sense of gratitude for all good things.  They were grateful to God for everything, the Great Giver of all things.  They thanked their God with works and prayers.  And they set aside a day in the fall, after harvest to be especially thankful for all that God’s earth had bestowed.  They set aside Thanksgiving Day to be grateful and to celebrate.  The harvest reaped assured them of survival and prosperity during the harsh winter to come and they were grateful.  The earth gave and they harvested.  The earth bestowed the bounty of God and they reaped the harvest, with gratitude and with thanksgiving.  Even as they, the first ones here, thanked the God Creator for these unspeakable, incredible gifts, so should we.

So, amidst the fun and fellowship of the Thanksgiving Day and week, we should set aside time to be grateful.  We should tell others of our gratitude and in a world so often negative and spiteful, let our attitude be positive and think on those things which are good, for there are so many of them.

When households and humans the world over die every day, we should be grateful for life, for living, for the lifestyle we enjoy.  Opportunity for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is everywhere, thanks be to God.  We can start by serving HIM, and others.  We can work and be productive.  We can learn and train.  We can earn, and profit, and grow, grow personally and professionally in so many ways.  And we can do that every day, EVERY DAY, and especially this day which the Lord hath made.  Thanks be to God for opportunity, for the freedom which creates that opportunity.

So we celebrate life and we who are pro-life pray that there may be no abortion.  That life, man and woman, and family will be governed by Biblical principles.  That the elderly will be loved and live as long as possible.  That we will educate, train up our young in the right ways so that when they are mature, they will take responsibility for our great country, protect the American way and revive us again with a deep sense of morality.  How thankful so many of us would be for such a revival, the revival of love and respect for our Lord and for our great country.  We should help them learn the lessons of grateful hearts.

And surely, we should be grateful for family and friends, should we not?  Those closest to us may be the least appreciated.  We should share our love with them and tell them our feelings.  We should thank them, love them for all that they do and all that they are.  There are those who do so much, give so much to us without thanks.  Like a loving spouse.  And our children, spreading their love and joy.  And for our friends, ready in our time of need, sharing life with us and making it better.  We should not only be thankful for all of them, but tell them so, and share the love we feel for them.  So that we honor our Lord at Thanksgiving not only with love for HIM, but others as well, our neighbors, even as we love ourselves.  If you were to see them, be with them perhaps for the last time, what would you say?  Thanksgiving gives you the opportunity to say it.

And surely we are thankful for our freedoms, are we not?  For our great Constitution, our Bill of Rights, our Declaration of Independence, our Rule of Law at work and the freedom we enjoy to pursue life, liberty and happiness as we choose.  No one, no entity, no government can tell us what to do.  We can define our own happiness and pursue it as we wish.  We can feel the joy of living as we wish and perhaps as much as anything at this special time, we should be thankful, THANKFUL for this.

And, surely Thanksgiving gives us the opportunity to CELEBRATE, and joyfully so.  Most of us can enjoy wonderful food, and the aromas of turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce.  How good it would be if we could make certain that others less fortunate could enjoy what we enjoy as well.  We should be grateful Thanksgiving Day, and week and all year long for the food of the harvest we enjoy as our forefathers did.  Even as we partake of the fellowship of family and friends, and the fun and good times of the day, and of course for so many the football, as we eat the bread of the day, we should remember the BREAD OF LIFE, the One who came for us and makes life so worth living.  Even as we enjoy the fruits of the plains, so we should rejoice even more so in the fruits of the Spirit.  In all things, giving thanks, THANKS to the God who indeed blesses America.

As a young boy at Thanksgiving, our family traditionally traveled to a local orphanage.  There we sang and witnessed to them in word and song, brought them joy and blessings and provided them with Thanksgiving food.  Our family Thanksgiving Day started with that special blessing for them, and even more so for us.  Even as we gave, we got more in return.  Then, back home where our family tradition included a spirited touch football game on the front lawn, more games, and more fun, and more fellowship, and more laughter, and more joy.  The joy of the Lord was abundant in our household and we were grateful, thankful to God for father and mother, for home, for food, for everything we were given.  We were safe and secure, wrapped in the arms of love and joy.  How wonderful that was.

And we think of the world at large.  Wars and rumors of wars.  ISIS kills without reason.  Terrorism abounds, and the threat of that even in our own country.  There is North Korea with incredible nuclear capability, seemingly ready to strike even our beloved America.  And Iran, and Russia, and China, so that the world is at war or gets ready for it.  We have been ordained, privileged to live in these times, perhaps the end times which should cause us to be even more thankful for what we have, never taking for granted or assuming the future but living with thanks for this very day and the opportunities it brings.  We who can and will enjoy the spirit of Thanksgiving should do our very best to spread that to a needy world.  And the best of that of course is the Bread of Life, the salt and light of Jesus Christ, the first fruits of the spiritual harvest.  We should spread that message the world over and give thanks to God for the opportunity.  Only that message, that person can solve the world’s problems, and make all humankind loving and grateful.

So often, we sing or recite the words of God Bless America.  For it is in fact, OUR HOME SWEET HOME.  But God has already blessed America, and all of us.  In so many ways, we have had the best of everything.  Our lifestyle has been exceptional.  America is in fact an exceptional country in so many ways and we should make certain that this, OUR LAND OF PLENTY shares that PLENTY, all that bounty with all of our fellow citizens.  Thanksgiving gives us that very special opportunity to share in that way.

And as we continue to pray for our great country, we should ask the God of all blessings to STAND BESIDE HER (America) and guide her, through the night and with the bright light of the Gospel at all times.  For the moral light of America has been dimmed and we are no longer the beacon on the hill we once were.  We should resolve at Thanksgiving to be a part of a new reformation, a new revival, grateful and thankful hearts returning to the very highest spiritual principles.  That is real Thanksgiving at work.  We should resolve to turn from our wrongful ways, we should pray for God’s help, we should seek His guidance and wisdom and above all, as Second Chronicles tells us, we should humble ourselves before our God and when we do all four, we will be heard and change, fundamental moral and loving change will occur in our great country and in us.  Thanksgiving should motivate us to do that.

The blessings of God do in fact exist from the mountains, and to the prairies and to the oceans white with foam.  God has blessed America with an uniqueness we should never take for granted.  And at this wonderful season, we should be especially thankful for:

OUR HOME SWEET HOME

And for all of those great and brave men and women who have fought and died for our freedoms, and made certain that we who now enjoy can live so abundantly in this our Home Sweet Home.  We owe them gratitude this day and in fact at all times.

Especially at Thanksgiving time, the words of that great song GOD BLESS AMERICA should ring out with love and gratitude:

GOD BLESS AMERICA

LAND THAT I LOVE

STAND BESIDE HER

AND GUIDE HER

THROUGH THE NIGHT WITH THE LIGHT FROM ABOVE

FROM THE MOUNTAINS

TO THE PRAIRIES

TO THE OCEANS WHITE WITH FOAM

GOD BLESS AMERICA

MY HOME SWEET HOME

GOD BLESS AMERICA

MY HOME SWEET HOME

I personally am so thankful for the Christian faith, for the love and salvation of Jesus Christ which is mine.  I have experienced that spiritual harvest, and I have so personally enjoyed and partaken of the blessings of THE SALT AND LIGHT OF THE WORLD.  Life has, for me, been so much more meaningful and I treasure and am so thankful for such wonderful blessings in my life.  And so I personally say, thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift in Jesus Christ and I do hope and pray for the very same for you.  May you and all mankind experience that love, and that salvation so that you can say at Thanksgiving time and every day this marvelous prayer:

THANK YOU LORD FOR SAVING MY SOUL

THANK YOU LORD FOR MAKING ME WHOLE

THANK YOU LORD FOR GIVING TO ME

THY GREAT SALVATION SO FULL AND FREE

And as well, gratefully and prayerfully, our grateful hearts should sing these wonderful words:

O BEAUTIFUL FOR SPACIOUS SKIES

FOR AMBER WAVES OF GRAIN

FOR PURPLE MOUNTAIN MAJESTIES

ABOVE THE FRUITED PLAINS

AMERICA, AMERICA

GOD SHED HIS GRACE ON THEE

AND CROWN THY GOOD

WITH BROTHERHOOD

FROM SEA TO SHINING SEA

At Thanksgiving time, my fellow Americans, may God bless America and may:

GOD BLESS YOU!