Reasons for Thanks, 2016
This year, Thanksgiving feels even more appropriate than ever, given the huge turn of events on Election Day.
For those of us worried about the arc of our country toward lawlessness, socialist economics and ever-growing government, it was an answer to heartfelt prayers.
For the first time in eight years, Americans can be grateful that restoration is underway; that the powers that be will soon be upholding the law instead of undermining it; and that the forces that would “fundamentally transform” America and make it unrecognizable to a self-governing people have been vanquished —- for now.
We are grateful to God for giving our nation another chance to live up to the great promise of freedom established by our Founders. And speaking of liberty, we are grateful to the brave members of our military, past and present, who have kept us free and secure. We are especially thankful for our men and women in law enforcement who put their lives on the line every day to keep our communities safe.
For those who were disappointed by the election’s outcome, we can’t say we’re sorry, but we do extend the hand of unity to those of goodwill despite our disagreements. We are blessed beyond measure to live in a country that, unlike other nations, has had a peaceful transition of power for more than two centuries.
None of this happened by accident, as we are reminded when we reflect on our first president’s Thanksgiving proclamation, which followed an act of Congress.
George Washington proclaimed Thursday, Nov. 26, 1789, to be a day of “public thanksgiving and prayer” devoted to “the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be.”
He went on to beseech his countrymen to express gratitude for “the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.”
As we gather around the table with family and friends for turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce, we might want to think also about the Jamestown settlers in 1610, who staged the very first Thanksgiving in Virginia after an English ship arrived to save the starving community. Or we can ponder the Pilgrims at Plymouth, Massachusetts, whose three-day feast and prayers in 1621 with the Wampanoag Indians marked a successful harvest and became the model for America’s Thanksgiving holiday. In both cases, gratitude toward Providence inspired the festivities.
We’re grateful here at the ACRU to be able to work to preserve liberty, and we wish everyone a healthy, happy and safe Thanksgiving!