Thursday, November 23, 2006

A Few Thoughts on Thanksgiving

The Thanksgiving holiday, though originally and legislatively is a God-centered celebration, has become a heavily politicized, commercialized and humanized tradition. From the political demonstrations of indians in D.C. to the food and football focus in the American home, the origin and orientation of Thanksgiving is easily forgotten.

It is forgotten that the first thanksgiving was the fruit of pilgrims' praise, in fellowship with Indians, to a God who had led them through adversity. In our land of plenty God's provision is not recognized as the product of divine mercy, but as the well-earned product of human work. No doubt, our participation in the creation mandate is essential in harvesting our plenty, but that mandate is also a blessing secured by the mercy of God. There are many people whose work in the ruling and subduing of the earth is equal, but thier produce unequal. Nevertheless, our Thanksgiving roots are not economical, as many would have us believe of the opportunist pilgrims.

It is forgotten that Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the holiday "as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens." Started by the pligrims and sanctioned by a president, this day commemorates the faithfulness of God, not the fortitude of man. Perhaps our land of plenty dulls our sensitivities to the infinite mercies of God? Perhaps the presence of adversity would foster greater recognition of the endless reasons to thank our beneficent Father?

I am reminded of God's faithfulness in providing for us, leading us to Austin, and giving my wife a fruitful womb. In turn, I consider not only his mercy, but also his creativity and propencity to produce life.
I think of the assasination of the Prime Minister of Lebanon in the context of the killing of Jesus--for both there is the hope of the resurrection. I consider the hundreds killed or injured by blasts in Iraq today in the context of His promise to restore all things...and long for that day. I thank God for God, for being an essentially creative, life-giving, world-renewing Creator who in Christ has set the creation project back on track, destined for an eternal state of fructification and glorification.

Thank God for God.


At 4:36 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This was wonderful, thanks for the wise reflection! Happy Thanksgiving!


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