On December 13, 1621 the very first Thanksgiving occurred in the United States; a three-day feast was held by the Pilgrims.  Today, millions across the country, many who otherwise live ungrateful lives will sit down to a “Thanksgiving” meal.  Many today will take time to reflect on the things they are thankful for, things they ordinarily take for granted.

It is good to be reminded of the need to be grateful.  Life is so busy, and it is so easy to go through life griping at the small inconveniences rather than expressing gratitude for the small and great blessings in our lives.

My question for you today is: To whom are you thankful?

Thanksgiving is such a generic day in our time, but it did not start out as such.  Here is one of the gaps in our public school system.

As elementary schoolers across the country dressed up like indians and pilgrims this week, with those funny hats and feathers, how many heard of the true reason behind Thanksgiving.

My recollection of those days was that the Pilgrims were grateful to the Indians for their help.  But is that really the case?

How many kids are reading accounts, like this from Pilgrim Edward Wilson, who was present at that first thanksgiving feast:

“Our harvest being gotten in, our Governor sent four men on fowling [bird hunting] so that we might, after a special manner, rejoice together after we had gathered the fruit of our labors. They four in one day killed as much fowl as… served the company almost a week… Many of the Indians [came] amongst us and… 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… And although it be not always so plentiful as it was at this time with us, yet BY THE GOODNESS OF GOD WE ARE… FAR FROM WANT.”

Today, as you think and say things like, ‘I’m thankful for family and friends,’ to whom are you thankful?

So often we say we are thankful, as if it is to some random force out there.  We offer thanks up into the air.

But we know that when we receive a gift, there is a giver.

As you reflect on your thankfulness today, stop and think about the Giver of all those good things.  There is a Giver, who first gave you life, and subsequently every good experience, every good relationship and person, every good thing in your life.

Do not allow this day to pass without offering thanks, as the Pilgrims did, to the GOD who created you.