Special Reflection: Thanksgiving 2012

10 “He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own,and his own people did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 whowere born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” ~ John 1:10-13

The Lord thy God has done some miraculous things but the one singular accomplishment was the creation of the world through the light of Jesus Christ. In many ways we can correlate our American Holiday of Thanksgiving and other nations Thanksgiving celebrations within the creation story itself. The link between scripture and literal history falls upon each  pilgrim and the reasons they chose to make this long hard arduous journey. The beliefs which they carried within their hearts with much faith and determination as they crossed the Atlantic fighting disease, risking starvation all with the hope of a new beginning. Jesus was in the world with those first sailors from Europe just as he was with the Jews. Like those Jew in Jesus’s day who meet our Lord face-to-face and who did not believe or accepted Him, so too not all the people aboard those first few ships believed in Christ but rather  prized a possible reward for their troubles through the efforts of man, not of God. But so to was it in Jesus’s day many accepted Him, believed in the light of Jesus Christ, and it was also these people, the first true christians aboard the most weather beaten hulks of lumber who made it far enough to see land once more who too also believed not of the blood, or of the flesh, or of man, but rather of the perfect will of God.  Through their great strife and sacrifice in their many hardships we look back at these two separate ages and can the see the hand of God molding our hearts and as he builds great nations of believers and from a few chose children of God. Much like all the apostles Jesus through the Holy Spirit made all things new, accomplishing His glorious task over and over throughout history always  through much pain and heartache, towel and trouble. Jesus succeed in creating the world a new, He succeed in planting the seeds of love, compassion, and forgiveness. It is in that spirit do we find the pilgrims  the american indians, the grand banquet of celebration and unity for the benefit of all.

“Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who treat you badly.” ~ Lost Gospel Q , Q14.

The miracle of Thanksgiving is not found in all the food, and the cake, not the fact the pilgrims embraced the indians or the indians embraced the pilgrims, but in the heart of each man and women who put aside all the hardship each group put the other through prior to the sitting down to celebrate.  It was the willingness to love each other enough to allow the others survival through the basic principal Jesus uttered two thousand years before ; “LOVE YOUR ENEMIES.”  Without this one common thread running through history it is easy to see there most certainly, most likely would not be this great body of people who can claim their heritage to the body of God.  We see there most likely would not have been the many great nations on this earth, there most likely would not have been America, Canada, and all the newest nations to join in on the ongoing banquet of Thanksgiving. How different would our world would have been if everyone of the pilgrims had a hardened heart? What kind of slaughter would have occurred had the indians not wanted peace and if they had not taken pity upon the few remain christians. It was but from a hand full of settlers that through this love and forgiveness and willingness to accept others into their heart and obeying the words of our savior, “DO GOOD TO THOSE WHO HATE YOU.”, many of us would not be here, our nation might not have survived. We celebrate each kernel of corn planted upon sandy beaches, each pig and deer hunted and killed, we celebrate each berry plucked from the vine, to each fowl plucked clean and cooked for this momentous occasion. For within each one of these things sacrificed and grown then shared was the words of Christ also upheld, “BLESS THOSE WHO CURSE YOU.” From these small miracles can we extrapolate the message of God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Indeed, it was among a handful of believers who where able to come together and dismiss the look, smell, lifestyle, dislike, distrust, and fear,  and before taking a bit did they all make this joyous bounty that had been laid-out before  sanctified in the Holy Spirit and in name of God where they then allowed to unit in prayer and celebration as they again obeyed Christ Jesus by the very act of prayer, “PRAY FOR THOSE WHO TRAT YOU BADLY.”

“Give, and there will be gifts for you. A full measure of grain, pressed down, shaken, together, and running over, will be poured into your lap; because the amount you measure out is the amount you will be given back.” ~Lost Gospel Q , Q18.

In the days of Jesus many people saw Him, witnessed His many sermons and could testify to His miracles, but none of them could contemplate the foundations which He had laid. Thanksgiving can thus find roots in our Lord Jesus Christ just as the foundations of the world is rooted in His love for all mankind. Our God has not been petty with us, He has not withheld anything. But we in our sin and transgressions have at times been petty with God, with each other, and with ourselves. The foundations of the teachings of our God can be best summed up with His commandment to give freely with one-another, hold nothing back, as the rewards awaiting you are measured out with the rod you used upon others, and with God. The miracle of the Last Supper, was in the actions of jesus as he held nothing back, much like the supper upon that first Thanksgiving where the indians and pilgrims brought equal food and drink to share freely with their fellow man. The astounding thing has to be that the indians would be facing a people that would not always meet them on such terms, and in some regard they knew this and still took pity and was in many ways greater christians for having done so, acting as christian in the words of our Lord even though the word, “Christian” was not yet within their vocabulary. In many ways the natives measure of grain in heaven is larger than ours today because of their mercy, forgiveness, act of love, and ability to bless their enemies with life.

 14 “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. 15 (John bore witness about him, and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks before me, because he was before me.’”) 16 For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 Forthe law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.” ~ John 1:14-18

Thanksgiving in many respects is a day the world celebrates as Jesus came into this world, shined His light upon us all so that we could come from the darkness of sin. The Lord God in heaven also made it possible for the many wars to come to a pause in order to observe Holy days of obligation and in our present times this day of Thanksgiving holds a truth among it that carries greatness in our ability to keep it for over two hundred years. It the testimony of this nation, of all nations who put aside their grievances with their fellow man and hold hands in the presences and might our Lord, Jesus Christ.


I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving 2012 and may the Lord lift your spirit whether you are with your family or are celebrating alone. May you all go in peace in the word and promises of our Lord.

Published by

Brother Brian

Brother Brian currently serves within the Archdiocese of Los Angeles Catholic School System. He is currently in his twentieth year of teaching.

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