Good News, Bad News This Thanksgiving
Published : November 20, 2018
Though we’re seeing a stunning increase of hatred, we can be thankful for our history – and for hope.
The very first Thanksgiving took place almost 400 years ago—long before the nation was even born. William Bradford, the founder of Plymouth colony settlement wrote:
“…Having undertaken, for the Glory of God and advancement of the Christian Faith and Honor of our King and Country, a Voyage to plant the First Colony.”God is a big part of our history. The United States Congress once issued an official Proclamation of Thanksgiving and Prayer on October 18, 1780, calling on Americans “to cause the knowledge of Christianity to spread all over the Earth.”
We have forgotten that the good news of Jesus Christ was once foundational to our liberties and lives and as a result, the nation has gone from spiritual to secular.
“Righteousness exalts a nation; But sin is a disgrace to any people.” Proverbs 14:34President Abraham Lincoln gave a Thanksgiving proclamation in 1863 in which he encouraged citizens to acknowledge the Lord. Earlier that year, with full support of the U.S. Senate, he declared a national day of fasting and prayer to God. Only 87 years after celebrating America’s independence and freedom as a nation, this prospering country was showing signs of comfort and spiritual compromise.
Here is a partial text from Abraham Lincoln’s proclamation:
“We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of Heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!"Lincoln was right. He implored the people to confess their sins, and to pray for forgiveness and mercy on America.
Today, we are plagued by political correctness and moral relativism, lawlessness, calling good evil and evil good, a loss of values, and the breakdown of social order.
Signs of the times indicate this nation is in rapid decline, but how long do we have? Consider just some of the cultural, social, and spiritual symptoms common to nations that have fallen or have been destroyed:
- Increasing rebellion against God
- A loss of economic discipline
- Greed; increased materialism
- Rising government bureaucracy and taxes
- Declining education in quality, morality, and in measurable results
- Lack of respect for authority
- Policies based on feelings over facts
- The acceptance of foreign gods and empty religious practices
- The promotion of sin and perversion
- A decline in value of human life leading to abortion and euthanasia
If you tend to look at the news, at government, public schools, the corporate world, Hollywood, or culture in general, it can be quite discouraging. But if we look at all the things we have personally and in this country to be thankful for, we can take heart.
First, there’s always hope which the Bible describes as an anchor to our souls during storms in life. Second, if Jesus Christ is the cornerstone of your faith, you won’t be shaken knowing all this is temporary.
Third, we still live in one of the most amazing countries on earth. We have countless blessings, conveniences, and advantages as citizens of this beacon of freedom. Why do you think millions of less fortunate people dream about living in America?
And fourth, if you woke up today and got out of bed; if you have your health, family, food on the table or in a refrigerator, clean running water, electricity, a house to live in, a car to drive, a job to go to and even bills that are paid, you are abundantly blessed more than 75% of people in countries around the world.
Every day we have so much to be thankful for, so –
Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, and His mercy endures forever. Psalm 136:1
O God, restore us and cause Your face to shine upon us, and we will be saved. Psalm 80:3