By T.M. Schoewe
Halloween, i.e. The Hallowed Eve and All Saints Day has passed and we are headed for another Thanksgiving Day. Actually everyday should be a day of giving thanks, but this day we call Thanksgiving is set aside by the official “Proclamation of thanksgiving for our nation” by the President of the USA. It is not a church holiday. But we as citizens observe this day and, of course as Christians, do this out of respect for authority and for the blessings that have been bestowed upon our nation from the Lord of heaven and earth Who has ordained governments among the peoples of the world.
Now almost everyone agrees we ought to thank God. And we tend to be anonymous about it, wanting to do it in general, for blessings in general, but that does not get us off the hook. Gratitude is not just a tip. It is an acknowledgement that has implications. Without question, Thanksgiving Day is one of the most misunderstood and brutalized holidays of the entire year. Without embarrassment some affectionately call it “Turkey Day.” And there seems to be no doubt in the minds of many American males that it is a day when the women had jolly well produce an ultimate meal, and the TV jolly well better not be out of adjustment for the football games. Although we sometimes say that Christmas is over commercialized and Easter paganized, those two holidays probably offend God almighty less than the barbarity of pious “thank yous” slurred heavenward by a nation of overfed “Turkey Day” football fans.
Before taking me to court for offending the tradition of the last Thursday in November, permit me to tell you what we mean about giving thanks to God. Let’s start by making sure to put the “I” in “thanks” so as to “think.” Think about it!! Think about our times! We are living in “fearsome” days. Latest unemployment figures still loom above 9%! Some of this you may well know about personally. National debt is in the trillions. What’s more, the enormous IOUs that “Uncle Sam” owes present and future Social Security recipients are not even factored in. Our government has spent our social security benefits before we ever get to see it! Even more fearsome is what we hear from Washington. Congress is at an impasse. The President is likewise. The worst is that they are at an impasse with one another. We all know there was never a good relationship between this President and the Republicans in Congress, but now it is also true with several of the Democrats. And now the leader of our nation is passing executive order after executive order to bypass Congress in order to fulfill his campaign promises of four years ago and continues a campaign against his own government. How can this be? Think about it!
And now we are headed for a national Thanksgiving! What shall we do with this fearsome mess? To get ready to celebrate another National Thanksgiving we need to pray for our Nation, pray for our government, which is “of, for and by the people.” Pray for what? Make sure we pray for “good government!” Just think what would happen if everyone in congress, every representative, the President and his cabinet, and the thousands of civil servants would just honestly pray for “good government.” This of course would rid the government of all that is bad and crooked and self-serving. And of course, due to the fallen nature of humanity, this will never fully happen. But as citizens, and especially Christian citizens, as we look forward to another National Thanksgiving we need to heed the Scriptures which direct us to pray for “all those in authority.” Whatever happened to the weekly prayers in our churches for the nation and those in authority?
Next week we will give you a list of what to pray for! So that you can think about for what to pray, thank God and make sure!