Bringing God back into Thanksgiving

by David Crum

Op-ed by David T. Crum | Photo: Alamy

As Americans prepare for Thanksgiving, it is important to remember the holiday’s historical significance.

Thanksgiving has always played an essential role in American culture. For many people, especially Christians, it focuses on providing gratitude to the Lord. The holiday’s roots lie in the Pilgrims surviving a harsh winter and expressing thankfulness to God. Throughout the passing generations, the sole focus for many emphasized the connection to Christianity.

Most Americans still celebrate Thanksgiving as they do Christmas. While the country has abandoned certain Christian beliefs, there is still a chance to embrace the principles of the past.

We typically spend Thanksgiving with family, friends, and loved ones. Praise God for the country in which you live, your health, your vocation, and your family. Exalt the Lord for salvation and freedom from sin.  

Remember the soldiers, public servants, and healthcare workers working to ensure your safety remains. Allow Jesus’ teachings of loving God and your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 22:37-39) to be the day’s goal.

If you are not walking with the Lord, perhaps there is no better time to reconsider your life. The Lord promises He will not abandon His sheep (1 John 1:9).

Although Thanksgiving has become focused on food and football, it’s important to preserve its historical significance and prioritize God during the holiday. There is nothing wrong with some family fun, but teach your loved ones, and especially your children, to praise God. What better day to honor the Lord in family prayer seated around the table?

Consider serving others in whatever capacity is available to you. Emulate Jesus by sharing the love and power of the Gospel. Mix old traditions with new ones, perhaps bringing in Bible readings and prayer around the dinner table.

Humble yourself and allow your family and friends to see you rely on the Lord for direction.

God is with those who follow Him and don’t abandon Him. We need the Lord’s guidance, blessings, and instruction every day. But the distinction of Thanksgiving focused on God should be at the center of your gathering.

Perhaps you will feast with family and friends, some of whom might not know Jesus Christ. Never underestimate your impact on others; take each opportunity to share Christ’s love and saving power.

There is no denying that the Lord has bestowed many blessings upon the United States. However, the direction in which the nation is heading troubles many believers. Do your part to bring God back into the country’s makeup and foundation. Placing the emphasis on Him during Thanksgiving is a start.

May the Lord bless your day. May He watch over our nation, soldiers, and politicians, giving us heavenly wisdom and understanding.

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you,” reads 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.

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