by Melvin Truex, Sr.Praise and Thanks to Our Maker
Thanksgiving to God should be the first and highest order of our lives. We are the beings of His creation, made in His image. Though that image is marred through Adams's sin, we can trace all the good traits of our lives to it.
Our world is a gift from Him. It is ever a source of breathtaking events and miraculous discovery. Regardless of the sorriness into which the race everywhere has fallen, this world is still a wonderful place in which to be. The order of the planets; the space they occupy with its almost untouched possibilities; the sea with its myriad forms of life and secrets yet to be unfolded by scientific research; the very landscape, colored in all the hues of rich beauty by the constant changes of the seasons-these all should cause an eruption of praise within us.
Then think of the growing season when seeds are sown with hope, and suddenly show that God is still keeping His promise that seed time and harvest should not fail. Harvest time is a wonderful time to behold.
Our nation, early in its infancy, learned the valuable lesson of showing thankfulness. As the first few brave people set out for an unexplored "New Land," rigorous events and circumstances awaited them, and so soon became evident. Their already small number was soon reduced by hardship and death. It is small wonder then that, as the first harvests began to show the great possibilities of promise for the future, they were beset with a desire to be thankful to the extent that a special day was set aside for it. Our nation knows it today and commemorates it as Thanksgiving Day.
This is a tradition we should always cherish and observe. Without the help of an eternal God, our forefathers could not have given birth to our illustrious America. We should dedicate ourselves to the task of perpetuating their act of being thankful and place it in the hands of all succeeding generations, polished well by our having been blessed with it and handling of it.
Not only are we highly favored by being placed in a world as wonderful as ours in which to live, but the peak of our favor lies in the fact that in the midst of all this earthy beauty He is preparing us for a home far more wonderful than this one. He tells us that, "Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man the things which God hath prepared for them that love him."
When we gather about our festive boards this season, let us in real gratitude try well to catch the magnitude of God's meaning to our world and to our lives. May the day be hallowed by the memory of those dear to us in life, who now dwell with Him in the upper garden, whose lives passed on to us traditions well worth keeping and protecting as hallowed treasures.
We live in a world no longer isolated. The eyes of the world are upon us. No man is an island unto himself. With the millions of eyes watching, can we dare to conduct ourselves in any other manner than in deep thankfulness?
Let us not only be thankful for our blessings, but thankful enough to share a portion of them with those whose eyes gaze longingly upon the good we have received because God has been mindful of us.
David, Israel's great king, sat before God one day in the midst of the great blessings Nathan had just pointed out, and said, "Who am I, O Lord God? And what is my house, that thou hast brought me hitherto?" In the midst of things already brought to him through God's mercy, and in the face of things just promised in the message Nathan had brought, which spoke of things for a great while to come, David was properly humbled before his God.
May we in this hour of world crises, sit before God with David, and with him pour out our souls in thankfulness, pure and unfeigned, in a manner acceptable to our God.
The Advocate, 1964