thanksgiving feast

Thanksgiving: Blessings & Thanks Abound

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18

This week we celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday. I am sure you and your family will enjoy a decadent meal with all the trimmings just as mine did. I love all of the delicious food and smells that that holiday brings. I don’t relish that I always have a bite or two too many or that sometimes we eat leftovers for days.

The first Thanksgiving was held in 1621 by the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Native Americans. This feast was to share the autumn harvest and its bountifulness. As most know, the colonists came over on the Mayflower. They endured tough times when first arriving. Pilgrims knew little about the animals, plants and climate of their new land. Some of you may not know or remember that they survived the first winter aboard the ship. During the time they established their colony, they relied on the friendship and support they received from the Wampanoag people. They taught them how to hunt, fish, grow crops and more.

What people often forget about the Thanksgiving holiday is why the Pilgrims first came. They came seeking religious freedom and opportunity. The blessing was that God provided all they sought. Here they found land, Squanto and the Wamponaugs who could teach them and communicate with them, and most importantly religious freedom.

The celebration of thanksgiving was yes first to celebrate their harvest, but most importantly that they had found the religious freedom and land they sought. What a celebration that must have been!

As you celebrate Thanksgiving this week, look at the day not just as a day of feasting but as a day to give thanks for our religious freedom that the Pilgrims worked so hard to get for us. Celebrate your ability to own land and the endless opportunities that we have. 

Just like the Pilgrims, they were confident that God would provide the freedoms they sailed off for and he did. We must continually maintain the same confidence that God will continue to provide us the freedoms as well. 

Philippians 4:19 reads “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”

Contributed by Jessica Clemens

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