Of giving thanks
President Abraham Lincoln set the standard on Thanksgiving proclamations. Sure, his wasn’t the first proclamation, but it might be the best. It captured a sense of national gratitude, even in a very difficult time. This was to be balanced with a sense of humility and repentance.
Perhaps you, dear reader, will express your gratitude to Almighty God today. While you’re saying thank you, also ask for God’s forgiveness for our individual and national shortcomings, and for God’s grace to amend our ways. Oh, and make special mention of God’s provision of turkey or Tofurky or whatever you eat.
Anyway, here’s a snippet of Lincoln’s proclamation.
I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.
I encourage you to read the rest. Perhaps you’ll even read it aloud at your family meal.
Image from Wikipedia.