Early pilgrims faced a grueling winter their first year in America enduring a harsh New England winter and the loss of many family and friends, yet chose to continue to have a deep faith in God and an attitude of gratitude. In the spring their new Native American friends showed them how to plant corn with a more plentiful harvest. That first harvest they reached out with an attitude of thankfulness and invited these new friends to a wonderful feast of thanksgiving celebrating God’s goodness and provision.
Living with an attitude of gratitude is more than a once-a-year thing, it is learning to focus on the things for which we have to be thankful each and every day and allowing that attitude of gratitude to touch the heart and lives of those around us. We all have so much to be thankful for: gifts and talents, friends and family, seasons of the year and seasons of life…Take a moment to say two words that can rekindle your joy for living and brighten someone’s day--thank you!…And take a moment to say thank you to God. . . Whatever your circumstances know that God loves you and God is there to see you through. Take a moment each day to say thank you to God. You will discover a deeper power and greater joy in your life! Surrounded by the cold, dark walls of an ancient Roman prison, the Apostle Paul writes these surprising words of encouragement to people undergoing adversity and persecution:
(Verse of the week)
Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for us in Christ Jesus. (1Thessalonians 5.18)
Wishing you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving!
(Prayer of the week)
Gracious and loving God, thank you for the many blessings with which you have touched my life. Thank you for the challenges of life that shape and strengthen me. Give me faith to trust in your plan and your strength. Mold me and make me that others may see your true reflection in me. Most of all may I experience your great love anew every day. May I be joyful in all things, and may I treat others with love that they may see the light of your love in me. Amen.
(quote of the week)
Edward Winslow, one of 53 colonists who survived the first winter of in Plymouth and records events of the first autumn celebration in 1621 records it this way: "our harvest being gotten in, our governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might after a special manner rejoice together, after we had gathered the fruits of our labors; they four in one day killed as much fowl, as with a little help beside, served the Company almost a week, at which time amongst other Recreations, we exercised our Arms, many of the Indians coming amongst us, and amongst the rest their greatest king Massasoit, with some ninety men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted, and they went out and killed five Deer, which they brought to the Plantation and bestowed on our Governor, and upon the Captain and others. And although it be not always so plentiful, as it was at this time with us, yet by the goodness of God, we are so far from want, that we often wish you partakers of our plenty."—Edward Winslow
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