Summary: As we all know in just a few days this country will be celebrating Thanksgiving.
As we all know in just a few days this country will be celebrating Thanksgiving. Americans as well as Hispanics will celebrate this day in the same fashion. This is a day when everyone will clear their agenda, and everyone will find the time to come together and enjoy an opulent dinner. This is a very beautiful tradition because it is a day when families come together, share memories and laughs, and interact with one another. But the problem that exists is that this so beautiful and special day, this day designated as a day for thanking God, with time has been losing its real meaning. Unfortunately many don’t see it for what it really is, a day for thanking God, they just simple see it as on less day of work, they see it as a day for a family reunion or party, and nothing else. Many have forgotten or have simply chosen to ignore that this day was highlighted by the founders of this great nation with a purpose. They have forgotten or simply have chosen to ignore that the purpose of this day was to thank God for everything that He had done for them. There are many that will have a lavish party on that day, many will have a big list of special guests, but one thing that many will forget to do is invite the most important guest of all. Many will invite a large number of people, but they will forget to invite God. Why does this happen? For the most part this happens because many fail to realize all that God has done in their life. This is why today I want us to reflect in what we should be thanking God for. Let’s now turn to the Word of God.
Psalms 96:1-13 - Oh, sing to the LORD a new song! Sing to the LORD, all the earth. 2Sing to the LORD, bless His name; Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day. 3Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples. 4For the LORD is great and greatly to be praised; He is to be feared above all gods. 5For all the gods of the peoples are idols, But the LORD made the heavens. 6Honor and majesty are before Him; Strength and beauty are in His sanctuary. 7Give to the LORD, O families of the peoples, Give to the LORD glory and strength. 8Give to the LORD the glory due His name; Bring an offering, and come into His courts. 9Oh, worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness! Tremble before Him, all the earth. 10Say among the nations, “The LORD reigns; The world also is firmly established, It shall not be moved; He shall judge the peoples righteously.” 11Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; Let the sea roar, and all its fullness; 12Let the field be joyful, and all that is in it. Then all the trees of the woods will rejoice 13before the LORD. For He is coming, for He is coming to judge the earth. He shall judge the world with righteousness, And the peoples with His truth.
As I always say, to have a better understanding of the message that God has for us today, it will be necessary to conduct a brief history review. Therefore, let’s get to know this Christian tradition a little better. When we take the time to research the origins of this tradition we discover that it had its birth in the United States of America in 1621. This tradition was started by the pilgrims of the colony established in Plymouth, Massachusetts. The reason for its beginning was that they were very grateful for the bountiful harvest, and for the way that the colony had prospered; the governor of the colony declared: “all you pilgrims, with your wife and children, gather in the communal house on the hill side… to listen to the pastor, and give thanks to almighty God for all of His blessings. Tell the person sitting next to you: “For the LORD is great and greatly to be praised”. So here we have the true origin of thanksgiving; the day was born from the desire of the heart of these people to set aside a special day to thank God for all of His blessings. From that time on, this tradition spread to all of the states, but was celebrated in different ways and dates. Finally in October 3, 1863 President Abraham Lincoln published the following proclamation from the White House:
“The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defense have not arrested the plough, the shuttle, or the ship; the axe had enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.