“Father, I thank You for the opportunity to come together with friends and family on this Thanksgiving day. I pray these blessings in the name of Your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.”
As I concluded saying grace, I surveyed our dining table covered with food and surrounded by my friends and family. Of all the holidays, Thanksgiving has always been my favorite. What could be more special than gathering friends and family and sharing a meal to give thanks for the blessings in our lives? Regardless of one’s religious or cultural upbringing, surely this is one holiday that can unite rather than divide us?
My idealism was quickly shattered. The politically correct pundits and social revisionists were out in full force on social media in the days surroundingThanksgiving. I spent time reading their posted links detailing the origins of Thanksgiving and the facts are, indeed, much darker than most Americans know or are willing to admit. However, after reading these sordid accounts, I paused to reflect upon the meaning of the day for me. When I gather to celebrate Thanksgiving, I am not celebrating the injustices that may have occurred, nor am I condoning any atrocities that may have been committed, I am celebrating the blessings that God has bestowed upon me and those whom I love. The contemporary message is love, but some cannot let go of the dark origins and this overshadows any positive benefits and blessings of the day.
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
Ephesians 4:31-32 (ESV)
If we continue to dwell on the past sins that we and others have committed, we will be forever mired in a continual state of unforgiveness. We will be negative, pessimistic people, incapable of escaping our past and doomed to relive our failures.
Thanksgiving may have had sinister origins but the message for today is to be thankful to God for His blessings in our lives. I honor the memory of those who unjustly suffered from the origins of Thanksgiving, but I chose to celebrate the blessings of God and rejoice in His message of love and peace for all. I choose forgiveness through the saving grace of Jesus Christ.
Happy thanksgiving for each and every day we live for God!
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.