As your kitchen's warming up, I hope your heart is, too…filled with thanks for the million reasons we have to be so! Being thankful is such an awesome idea! And just to give you a beautiful Scripture to support the cause of the "Thanks-filled Heart", why don't you turn in the Bible to verse…
By the way…
Here's something to be thankful for! Did you know that for years and years, you couldn't really say, "Turn in the Bible to verse so-and-so…"?
Bibles were written on scrolls like a roll of paper towels. In order to find a verse, you had to unroll… and unroll… and unroll it until you found your verse! It'd take forever! When you said, "Turn in the Bible to verse…", what you meant was, "Turn and turn and turn and turn in the Bible to verse…"!
Then someone got an idea!
"Why not cut the roll into evenly measured out pieces, tie and bind the ends together on one side, and then you can just flip from one place to another?! You could go from Isaiah to First Corinthians in one flip! It'll save hours and reading the Bible won't be so hard on our arm muscles!"
And that's where books (instead of scrolls) came from!
It was a totally awesome idea! All amazing ideas are like that! It might seem kinda obvious to us later, but until someone thought of it, no one had thunk it!
Like having a day once a year to stop…breathe deeply…and thank God for all He has given to us and done for us!
It seems like an obvious idea to us! But someone had to think of it!
Thanksgiving was her idea…
Sarah Josepha Hale, editor (she liked to be called “editress”) of Godey’s Ladies Book (as well as the author of the epic poem, “Mary Had a Little Lamb”) thought that we reallllly needed a day to thank God for how much He has blessed us all. And she thought the idea needed to come from the top! So she wrote to President Zachary Taylor, saying, “Y’know, we really need a day to give thanks to God in America!”
She wait ‘til he was gone and wrote the next Chief Exec, Millard Fillmore. “We really should have a national thanksgiving day!”
He didn’t write back either.
So, she waited ‘til there was someone else in the White House.
Franklin Pierce didn’t answer either.
Her next letter was to…
“President James Buchanan
1600 Pennsylvania Ave, Washington, DC ”
It wasn’t until the 6’5” Kentuckian from Illinois was sitting in the Oval Office, that she got an answer back! As he leaned back in his chair at the desk and propped those huge boots on the desk (as he usually did) he sliced the envelope open, puffed into it, pulled the letter out and read…
“Philadelphia, Sept. 28th 1863.
Permit me, as Editress of the 'Lady's Book', to request a few minutes of your precious time, while laying before you a subject of deep interest to myself and -- as I trust -- even to the President of our Republic, of some importance. This subject is to have the day of our annual Thanksgiving made a National and fixed Union Festival.
For the last fifteen years I have set forth this idea before the Governors of all the States and Territories. Also I have sent these to our Ministers abroad, and our Missionaries to the heathen, and commanders in the Navy. It has occurred to me that a proclamation from the President of the United States would be the best, surest and most fitting method of National appointment.Thus the great Union Festival of America would be forever secured.
Excuse the liberty I have taken.
With profound respect,
Sarah Josepha Hale,”
So he did!
In his 1863 Thanksgiving Proclamation, he wrote..
“…It has seemed to me fit and proper that God’s blessings should be solemnly, reverently, and gratefully acknowledged, as with one heart and one voice, by the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow-citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next as a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens. … In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the city of Washington, this 3d day of October, A.D. 1863, and of the Independence of the United States the eighty-eighth.
But, it wasn’t really his idea.
It was hers.
Actually it wasn’t her idea, either.
Turn in your Bible to Ephesians 5:19-20…Ready? Let's read together…
“Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Thankfulness...It’s the best idea!
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
(By the way, we’re super thankful for you!)