(Note: This was posted at 12:29 am on 11/27. I just figured out how to fix the time for my location.)
Another year has gone by and today is Thanksgiving Day... This is a day I have been celebrating with my family and friends since I can remember.
It's a National Holiday, of course...
In 1941 the U.S Congress passed a bill that Thanksgiving be observed annually on the fourth Thursday of November.
Why did they do this? It seems that a Day of Thanksgiving had become routine by then. The first recorded "DoT" was in 1565 by Spaniards in St. Augustine, Florida. This continued with the colony of Virginia in 1619 and the Plymouth pilgrims in 1621. I understand why these guys would be thankful, but when did our government get involved?
The First National Proclamation of Thanksgiving was given by the Continental Congress in 1777.
Here is a small portion of that proclamation: "FOR AS MUCH as it is the indispensable Duty of all Men to adore the superintending Providence of Almighty God; to acknowledge with Gratitude their Obligation to him for Benefits received, and to implore such farther Blessings as they stand in Need of: And it having pleased him in his abundant Mercy, not only to continue to us the innumerable Bounties of his common Providence; but also to smile upon us in the Prosecution of a just and necessary War, for the Defense and Establishment of our unalienable Rights and Liberties; particularly in that he hath been pleased, in so great a Measure, to prosper the Means used for the Support of our Troops, and to crown our Arms with most signal success."
On October 3, 1789, George Washington (as President) made the following proclamation and created the first Thanksgiving Day designated by the national government of the United States of America.
Here is a small portion of that proclamation: "Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor, and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me "to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness."
President Abraham Lincoln got involved and proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day, to be celebrated on the final Thursday in November 1863.
Here is a small portion of his proclamation: "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."
It seems the leaders of our government at critical times of these United States recognized the need to be grateful for the things that God has done for this country. It would serve us well if today's leaders took a little history lesson and remembered the things our great leaders of the past readily knew.
That one should be grateful and give thanks to God Almighty...
As I sit down to eat a meal that has been cooked by family and friends I will remember my Heavenly Father. I will thank Him for the things he has done, is doing and will do for my country, my family and me...
George, Abraham and Gaines...
That's pretty good company!!!!!
So forget about separation of church and state and have a Happy Thanksgiving!!!!