In his Dictionary of 1826, Noah Webster defined Thanksgiving as: “A public celebration of Divine goodness; also, a day set apart for religious services, specially to acknowledge the goodness of God, either in any remarkable deliverance from calamities or danger, or in the ordinary dispensation of His bounties.”
As Americans, we have a rich spiritual legacy of gratitude that has been passed down from the earliest Christian settlers. You can learn more about the history of this holiday on our Thanksgiving History pages. Indeed, the humble recognition of God’s provision of all good things defined our nation in its early years.
My prayer this season is that, so many years after the founding of our nation, we will continue to recognize God as our gracious provider and heed his words in Deuteronomy:
“When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the LORD your God for the good land he has given you. Be careful that you do not forget the LORD your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees . . . . Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the LORD your God” (Deuteronomy 8:10-14a).
I also pray that the resources on this site encourage you to give thanks, not only for your present blessings, but for the spiritual legacy of gratitude that has been passed down through so many generations in the United States. Whether you are looking to build meaningful traditions with your family, learn more about the history of Thanksgiving and its symbols, or find creative ideas for cooking and crafting, I hope you will be inspired here to celebrate Thanksgiving in a God-honoring way.
May your celebrations be rich and meaningful!
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