Since it’s 2020, you’d think we would have seen this coming. But I didn’t. Cancel Thanksgiving? Seriously? That’s literally what several states have announced. Even the great state of Texas has encouraged the cancellation of large Thanksgiving gatherings. Health experts have discouraged any kind of travel or lingering too long around the turkey and pumpkin pie, unless it’s with your immediate family.
Here’s my question: Cancel THANKSGIVING but not BLACK FRIDAY?
(Sorry, couldn’t resist.)
Governor William Bradford of Plymouth Colony issued a Thanksgiving proclamation in the autumn of 1621 and the first Thanksgiving lasted three days, during which the Pilgrims feasted on turkey and venison with their Indian guests.
In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln issued the proclamation for the establishment of a national holiday, designating the last Thursday in November as the official day.
In April of that same year, he issued another proclamation I think is even more powerful and appropriate today than the day he issued it. Ironically, it was a proclamation for a national day of fasting, but it’s perfect for Thanksgiving 2020.
Why cancel THANKSGIVING but not BLACK FRIDAY?
Here’s what he said:
“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 God that made us! It behooves us, then to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our national sins, and to pray for clemency and forgiveness.”
Regardless of how big or small your Thanksgiving might be this year, I hope you’ll take a few moments to thank God for all of your blessings (James 1:17).
The old song has it right …“Count your many blessings. Name them one by one. And it will surprise you what the Lord has done!”
Even in 2020, we have so much to be thankful for and no one can stop us from giving thanks!
© 2020. Barry L. Cameron
Barry L. Cameron has been the Senior Pastor of Crossroads since 1992 when the church was averaging 188 in morning worship. Pastor Cameron and his wife, Janis, have three children and two grandsons. He’s the author of the bestseller: The ABCs of Financial Freedom, Contagious Generosity, and The Financial Freedom Workbook. The Cameron family has been completely debt free since November 2001.