It’s Thanksgiving Day and there’s so much to be thankful for. When I say I’m thankful for something, it’s usually something I didn’t manufacture. It’s a gift. A blessing. (We tend to shun people who say they’re thankful to be so rich or good-looking or smart. Ha!) Thanksgiving implies humility.
I’m guessing the Pilgrims felt grateful for the favor of the Wampanoag tribe. There are a number of versions of the “first Thanksgiving,” but here’s the account from the journal of William Bradford, the first governor of Massachusetts. The settlers were celebrating and the tribe heard celebratory gunshots. Because they had a treaty of mutual defense with the Pilgrims, they came to their aid, mistaking the gunshots for an attack. Then, understanding that all was calm, the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag shared a meal.
Who knows which version is accurate, but I think it’s undisputed that the Wampanoag taught the Pilgrims how to cultivate corn, squash and beans. They’re credited with enabling the Pilgrims to survive their first winters.
There’s something really humbling about that.
Today I celebrate the goodness in our world. There’s so much bad, but there’s so much good. Maybe it gets overlooked at times, but may we have the eyes to see it…and be filled up with thanksgiving. I know I’m filled to overflowing for all the good people in my life. I’m humbled…and so grateful. Like Paul told the Philippians, “I thank my God every time I remember you.”