Thanksgiving is almost upon us. Many of us are thinking about what we are thankful for. The thing that struck me was religious freedom. I am so grateful I live in a country that supports religious freedom and the separation of church and state. That separation is vital to all religions.
I am thankful that everyone has the right to believe and practice whatever religion they choose. I may not agree with all of them, but I support their right to choose. Those who practice their religion are trying, to the best of their ability and understanding, to live by the Laws of God. Many good people do not believe in God, and that is their choice.
I would not want someone to tell me I had to stop blogging because my beliefs were different than theirs. If they don’t like what I write, it’s nice that all they need to do is click the little “X” in the right-hand corner, and Walla I’m gone.
I was looking back on that first Thanksgiving Day when the Pilgrims and Indians had a social gathering that was so hospitable. Since the last time I studied this, I was in grade school, I did some research, and their journey leading up to that point was a hard one.
The Church of England was getting too powerful, so this group exiled to Holland, and it was ok for a while. Then there was a truce between Holland and Spain, and the threat of war, causing them great discomfort. So they embarked on a great journey to the new world.
When they arrived in Cape Cod, they thanked God for bringing them safely through the difficult journey. But they realized that they were in a place that was very different from England, with no friends and no comfort.
Their first Winter in 1621 was harsh, they were infected with scurvy and other diseases from the voyage. Also, the winter was frigid, and they did not have houses yet in Plymouth. That winter, 50% of the small group died.
They met Squanto, a Native American who spoke English. I had forgotten that Columbus was not the first to land in North America. There was an agreement set up between the Indians and the pilgrims that stated, they would not hurt or steal from one another, would help each other if either was under attack and would leave their weapons behind when they met to talk. It would be wonderful if we lived by this today. 😊
The Pilgrims owed much to Squanto. Even though his home was 40 miles away, he stayed with them, teaching them how to plant corn, fish, and find other commodities. He showed them places that would benefit them.
They gathered in their first small harvest and had plenty for that summer and enough to fill up their houses and dwellings preparing for the next winter. Some were involved in affairs abroad, while others were fishing for cod, bass, and other fish, of which they prepared to store, and every family had their portion.
Besides fish, they had stored wild Turkey, venison, and there was plenty for everyone to last the winter. Things were looking up. They were able to write of their plenty to their friends in England.
Squanto stayed with the Pilgrims until he died.
The pilgrims had much to be thankful for that first Thanksgiving Day, and I am Thankful for their journey, as, without it, we might not be the great nation we are today. I know we are going through some troubling times, but I have faith that our nation will survive, as the Pilgrims did. Our nation has gone through a lot over the last 527 years and has always been victorious. There is no need to think that will change now.
Thanksgiving certainly has much more meaning for me in the last 30 years. After discovering my relationship with God and learning what true love is, I have much to be grateful for.
I plan on enjoying all the wonderful food my daughter and her husband are preparing for Thanksgiving dinner. It will be a small gathering as there are not many left in my family. My daughter Darchele and her hubby Tony and I live in Missouri. The remaining members of my family live many states away, and we never get together for the holidays. Tony’s sister just recently lost her husband, and is not ready to partake in the holidays yet, so she and her mother will not be with us this year. I am thankful his sister will have her mother with her for comfort.
I am grateful to all the followers on my Facebook Page and my website, almost 600 now. It is because of you that I keep writing my blogs. Thank You!
I love you all, have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day.
“I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving. (Ps. 69:30)