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Thursday, November 23, 2017

Ezra 3:10,11 Thought/Prayer:  Thanksgiving Week, #4 - Thanksgiving Day Thoughts. Topics:  2 at end.

Here is the wording of Abraham Lincoln’s proclamation of a day of Thanksgiving in the United States of America.  It was written by Secretary of State William Seward.  It is printed here to highlight the fact that he called it a Day of Thanksgiving and Praise, not just thanksgiving.  Then we will consider a day of great thanks, by the Israelites, well over 2,000 years ago.

“Washington, D.C.
October 3, 1863

By the President of the United States of America.

A Proclamation.

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle or the ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom. No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise [italics added] to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the United States the Eighty-eighth.

By the President: Abraham Lincoln

William H. Seward,
Secretary of State”

Ezra 3:10,11  “And when the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the LORD, they set the priests in their apparel with trumpets, and the Levites the sons of Asaph with cymbals, to praise the LORD, after the ordinance of David king of Israel.  And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks to the LORD; because he is good, for his mercy endures for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid.”  (AKJV)  (Read this scripture and more at

What a passage on rejoicing and thanking the Lord, this is.  It says it all right here.  The foundation of the temple was laid, and the people went all out in rejoicing and giving thanks.  The priests were highly dressed in their priestly clothing; they sounded trumpets; the Levites (the tribe of priests) clanged cymbals. 

They sang.  They shouted (with a great shout) as they praised God.  They did all of this because,  “he is good, for his mercy endures for ever toward Israel.”

Imagine folks today around the Thanksgiving-Day table being thankful in the same way.  We do put on nice clothing.  Some families, but not all, may sing.  Trumpets and cymbals?  Maybe not.  But what if there were!?  God would love it.

Shouting great shouts?  We could all go outdoors and try it . . . astonishing ourselves and our neighbors.

Well, if Thanksgiving Day were celebrated in like manner to this scripture, it would certainly be a day of rejoicing.  Whether we go to the extent of the Israelites described here, we may still rejoice as such in our hearts.  We will gather around; pray; perhaps sing; and be thankful.  Well, if Thanksgiving Day were celebrated in like manner to this scripture, it would certainly be a decorated day of noisy rejoicing.  Whether we go to the extent of the Israelites described here, we may still rejoice as such in our hearts.  We will gather around; pray; perhaps sing; and be thankful.  Are there inner heart-shoutings of thanks?  Perhaps.  God would hear. 

Today, His mercies endure for ever for those who know Him.  How we do praise Him on Thanksgiving Day for those mercies and His love and His provision.

Lord, we praise You.  May we lift our voices in prayer – and in whatever other ways on Thanksgiving Day, we praise You.  We want to remember also, Lord, all the babies born in the past year – they are the potential future for ongoing praise to You forever.  Please bless those children who are here because someone cared about created LIFE.

Topics:  On Thanksgiving, rejoice.  Praise God.  Thank Him for all persons who love God and love created LIFE.
Crisis Pregnancy centers everywhere, that their clients will be blessed today

Posted by Gail Richardson on 11/23 at 11:59 AM
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