Pilgrims, Old and New, Give Thanks

“In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

— 1 Thessalonians 5:18

“In the Name of God” begins the “birth certificate of America,” as it is called. The Mayflower Compact was the first step leading to the creation of the Constitution.

Every Thanksgiving we have an annual holiday reminding us to give thanks to God, just as the Pilgrims did in their long physical and spiritual journey.

“In the Name of God” is where America began, and I trust that today, though they have been long dead, the Pilgrims may still speak to us through this national holiday that we might learn something of those grand ideals, those spiritual truths, that so gripped their lives and so changed the world. Though their voice has oft been silenced by the cacophony of secular voices in our time, I think Thanksgiving should be a time to take a few minutes to thank God for His many blessings. That would include our fathers and mothers who brought forth this good land.

The Pilgrims based their colony on the Bible. They were fair in their dealings with all. They began as a church in England, where there was no religious freedom, so they moved to Holland, where there was toleration. Eventually, they came to America to worship Jesus according to the dictates of their consciences.

The Pilgrims dealt with unbelievably difficult circumstances. Half their number died that first winter, but through it all they thanked God. They provide a model of giving thanks to God in all circumstances.

Lord God, we do give thanks to You for all Your blessings. Give us Your strength in hard times to continue to give thanks and praise to You. Help us to honor this holy day by true thanksgiving to You…