What is Thanksgiving about? Thanksgiving is relatively unknown outside of the United States and Canada. Many curious friends of mine in Bolivia ask me why Thanksgiving is celebrated. In the last couple days I’ve told the story a few times – how God protected the first Europeans who landed on American soil, fleeing religious intolerance only to find poverty, hunger, and sickness. It’s a story of perseverance through a terrible winter, finding new friendship among the native Americans, and worshiping God for His faithfulness. Thanksgiving is bound-up with “family time”, and rightfully so. A reminder that the greatest blessings we have are not material things, but people – we who are so full of hopes and fears, we who were created in God’s image. Thanksgiving is a slap-in-the-face to materialism, individualism, and greed – that was it’s underlying intention (It’s hard to tell anymore!). By saying “thank you” to our Creator, we recognize how frail and temporary we are, so needing One to help us. Thanksgiving is about being thankful TO and FOR someone, not FOR the things themselves. We don’t thank the present when we receive it, but the giver. Thanksgiving is about thanking Him.
What am I thankful to God for? I am thankful for God’s endless goodness towards me. I deserve nothing, yet have been given everything by my Father. I am thankful for the purpose and vision that God has given my life, knowing that when I walk close to Him, the master-plan for my life unfolds – the very best way to possibly live. I am thankful for God’s Word, which has taught me so much, filled me with such joy, and given me true hope. I am thankful for the inner peace the cross affords me – knowing that nothing can separate me from the Promise that we are going Home. I am thankful for the family and friends that God has blessed me with, those who share with me in this Pilgrim’s journey until we reach our Promised Land. What are you thankful to God for?