1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 – “Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” NKJV
I have been concerned about the mindset of people, especially in America, for some time. I read something recently that caused me to, once again, examine America as a Christian nation or as a nation that is truly thankful to God. I still believe that the majority of Americans believe in God, the God of the Bible. I do not know what percentage actually serve God with a whole heart, but I do believe that based on what people believe, America could still be called a Christian nation.
I love history and value books like they were gold mines from which I can glean priceless nuggets. Reviewing our American history, I find that our first President, George Washington acknowledged his thankfulness and confidence in God unashamedly and without castigation by those demanding the mythical separation of church and state as a constitutional mandate. In 1789 he proclaimed a “day of public thanksgiving and prayer” and implored the heavens to “pardon our national and other transgressions” while urging the citizenry to practice “true religion and virtue.” He would probably be impeached and most assuredly censored today for such a proclamation and request.
In 1863 President Abraham Lincoln urged Americans to set aside the last Thursday of November as “a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.” Imagine that proclamation today and consider what the outcry would be from the media, the leftist, and activists. Lincoln would have been ridden out of town on a rail, but he was unabashed in his willingness to acknowledge God’s hand in the affairs of this nation and our need for His help.
President John F. Kennedy said, “More than three centuries ago, the Pilgrims, after a year of hardship and peril, humbly and reverently set aside a special day upon which to give thanks to God. They paused in their labors to give thanks for the blessings that had been bestowed upon them by Divine Providence.” He then quoted the Bible saying, “It is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord.” That was America of old and the America of my youth and I long for a return to that attitude in this nation, in our churches, homes, businesses, and world.
I do not own, nor will I, this book, but it is used in schools to teach our children about Thanksgiving. The title is “The Very First Thanksgiving” by Rhonda Greene. One review of the book said, “This is a beautifully illustrated picture book for young children about the original Thanksgiving feast but there is one caveat, this book nowhere mentions God, who is after all the reason for the holiday.” The author carefully avoids mention of God in the presentation which is perfect for the politically correct who want to dismiss God from society.
Today we are witnessing an assault on the Christian faith and in a few months, we will be celebrating Thanksgiving. My question is to whom or what are people giving thanks? Children today are told to be thankful, but God is not mentioned in the equation. It is time that we return to the basic principles of our faith and teach those under our care whom we are to be thankful to! Sadly, we are, by our actions or inactions, giving thanks to everything but God and that is tragic and disastrous.
God bless you as you go through this day!