“O Come, let us sing unto the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. For the Lord is a great God, and a great king above all gods” (Psalm 95:1-3).

Thanksgiving is the time of year that is set aside, as President Abraham Lincoln said in 1863: “It is the duty of nations as well as of men to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God; to confess their sins and transgressions in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon, and to recognize the sublime truth announced in the Holy Scripture and proven by all history that those nations only are blessed, whose God is the Lord.” How honestly President Lincoln then seriously tells us: “We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of Heaven … But we have forgotten God … 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. We have (greatly) become … too proud to pray to the God that made us.”

What President Lincoln knew about America during that Civil War has doubled and tripled in our day. Not only has our sin sought to dismiss and erase God and His Son Jesus Christ from the minds of adults, but even more fully from our children at school and in society.

Paul warned over 1,970 years ago to those who would read Romans chapter one: “For the invisible things of him (God) from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse … Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools” (Romans 1:20-22). How sadly true it is.

Unthankfulness to what is truth is both sinfulness and Hell-bound darkness. It seems that it is a common mistake for young people to not say “thank you” when we would be thrilled if they would. Thankfulness is needed by each of us to bring the benefits of humility into our hearts and minds. We all need to daily remember more of the gifts from above that were made so that we could greatly enjoy the blessings of God. There is nothing at all painful about truly being humble, thankful and yielding our lives to Jesus Christ! It is all good for today and will become better and more wonderful throughout eternity.

The more we consider what God has done for us, the longer becomes the list of truth we had not realized in the past. It gets wonderfully better as life advances us toward Heaven!

Christ asked about folks saying “thank you” after He had healed ten men in Luke 17, and only “one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, and fell down on his face at his feet, giving him (Christ) thanks” (Luke 17:15,16). How much we need to be thankful today — beginning with Christ and the salvation He made possible for all who would gladly receive it.

America has such a great need to open its heart and mind to God with Thanksgiving Day thought and prayer. The other events shown upon our calendars list Veterans Day, Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and especially the days that remind us of the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

How important it is for each of us to become more eager in our thanksgiving lives. Our nation seems to be so small in the hearts of many who have no clue as to why they should be greatly more thankful to God the Father and to Christ. The folks received from Colossians 3:15 the very truth we need in America now: “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body, and be ye thankful.”

Guidelines of thanksgiving teach us to be more content in what we already have and not so much the things that will one day evaporate. We can then concentrate on making differences in the lives of others as we allow our thankfulness to be known.

This Thanksgiving season should be one of 365 days each year. It is so important that it be focused upon eternal truth and not just upon earthly things. May we grow in that kind of a heart which we will gladly present to the Lord the day we come before Him face to face.

“We Gather Together” is a Netherland folk hymn that was translated by Mr. Theodore Baker (1851-1934). It says:

“We gather together to ask the Lord’s blessing;
He chastens and hastens his will to make known;
The wicked oppressing now cease from distressing,
Sing praises to His name: He forgets not His own.

“Beside us to guide us, our God with us joining
Ordaining, maintaining His kingdom divine
So from the beginning the fight we were winning;
Thou, Lord, wast at our side, All glory be Thine!

“We all do extol Thee, thou leader triumphant,
And pray that Thou still our defender wilt be.
Let Thy congregation escape tribulation;
Thy name be ever praised! O Lord, make us free!”

Receive more fully and rejoice in Christ this Thanksgiving!