VIDEO A Thanksgiving Proclamation by President George Washington – What Happened? – More Than A Holiday

President George Washington. 
(Public Domain.) 

On Oct. 3, 1789, America’s first president, George Washington, issued a proclamation declaring Nov. 26, 1789 as “a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God….”

Below is the complete text of that proclamation:

By the President of the United States of America. a Proclamation.

Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor—and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me “to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.”

President Ronald Reagan, first lady Nancy Reagan, and their
daughter Marueen Reagan celebrate Thanksgiving
in 1981. (Photo: Pinterest.) 

Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be—That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks—for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation—for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his Providence which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war—for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed—for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted—for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.

And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions—to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually—to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed—to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord—To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the encrease of science among them and us—and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New-York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

[signed] G. Washington

By Michael W. Chapman

Giving Thanks Is More Than A Holiday

What Ever Happened to Thanksgiving? – Dr. Charles Stanley

What We Have

For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have. 2 Corinthians 8:12

My friend was eager to gather her family and friends for a festive holiday celebration at her home. Each of the guests looked forward to gathering around the table together and wanted to help defray the expense of feeding so many by contributing to the meal. Some would bring bread, others salad or a side dish. For one guest, however, money was exceptionally tight. Although she looked forward to spending the evening with those whom she loved, she couldn’t afford to purchase any food. So, instead, she offered to clean the host’s home as her gift.

She would have been welcome at the table had she come empty-handed. Yet she looked at what she did have to offer—her time and skills—and brought them to the gathering with her whole heart. I think that’s precisely the spirit of Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 8. They had been eager to give to help some fellow Christians, and he urged them to follow through on that effort. He commended them for their desire and their willingness, saying their motivation to give is what makes a gift of any size or amount acceptable (v. 12).

We’re often quick to compare our giving to that of others, especially when our resources don’t afford us the luxury of giving as much as we’d like to. But God views our giving differently: it’s our willingness to give what we have that He loves.

Lord, help me see what You’ve given me, even if it doesn’t seem like much by the world’s standards. Help me to give generously.

God loves wholehearted giving of any measure.

By Kirsten Holmberg

It Is Good to Give Thanks

Psalm 92:1-4

Have you ever wondered why God says it’s good to give Him thanks? There are obviously some benefits associated with gratitude, but for whom?

Thanksgiving magnifies the Lord because we are acknowledging Him as the source of all our blessings. It can also have an effect on those who hear us praising and thanking God, as they may be prompted to do likewise. But there are benefits for those expressing gratitude, as well.

Thankfulness readjusts our focus. When we begin to praise and thank the Lord, the pressures and demands of daily life feel lighter. Instead of having our minds distracted by the cares of this world, God and His goodness become the center of our focus. What’s more, we gain awareness of our dependence upon Him and become more appreciative of His care and provision.

Gratitude releases our anxiety. We rarely feel grateful when we’re burdened with troubles and worries, but that’s when we most need to offer God our gratitude. There’s an amazing physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual change that occurs when we begin voicing praise. Burdens are lifted, the internal churning stops, and we come away rejoicing in the Lord.

Thanksgiving reinforces our faith. Recalling our blessings and the many ways God has expressed His goodness toward us reminds us of His faithfulness. Knowing how He has worked in the past strengthens us to trust Him for the future.

The next time you’re feeling down or burdened, remember all the good that comes from thanking the Lord, and lift your voice in gratefulness. God is right—it is good to give thanks.

Son of Thankfulness

“And she conceived again, and bare a son: and she said, Now will I praise the Lord: therefore she called his name Judah; and left bearing.” (Genesis 29:35) 

This verse is the testimony of Jacob’s first wife, Leah, at the time of the birth of her fourth son. It also is significant in that it contains the first mention of the Hebrew yadah, often rendered “praise” but more often “thank” or “thanks.” In fact, she even named her son Judah, which is essentially the same Hebrew word.

Although Reuben, Simeon, and Levi were all older sons of Leah, God chose Judah to be the father of the tribe through which Christ would come into the world. Whenever Leah spoke to her son, she would actually be calling him “Thanks” and thus in effect remembering her gratitude for this gift of a special son.

We also continue to give thanks every day for that special Son of the tribe of Judah, the Lord Jesus Christ. And as Judah later was willing to offer his own life for his brother Benjamin (see Genesis 43:9) out of love for both his brethren and his father, so this distant grandson of Judah was willing to lay down His own life to save those whom He was glad to call His brethren (Hebrews 2:11-12).

In the last reference to Judah in the Bible, this son of Judah is called “the Lion of the tribe of Judah” who will one day be acknowledged as King over all the earth (Revelation 5:5). The last mention of “thanks” in the Bible is when the elders of the church in heaven cry out: “We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and has reigned” (Revelation 11:17).

We surely have much for which we thank God, but most of all we are thankful for the Son of God, our Creator, Savior, and coming King. HMM

Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest

Hebrews 3:12-19

Hebrews 3:12

No good ever comes of carelessness. He who never examines himself is sure to be self-deceived.

Hebrews 3:13

Sin slyly insinuates itself and by slow degrees prevails, therefore must we carefully guard against it.

Hebrews 3:14, 15

Continuance in faith is necessary to salvation, and only those who persevere to the end are indeed saved.

Hebrews 3:16-19

Want of true faith causes the religion of many to be shortlived. Those who are not sustained by faith soon weary of holiness and provoke the Lord.

Hebrews 4:1-6, 9-16

Hebrews 4:6-9

nor did Joshua lead the next generation into rest, or else David would not have spoken of another day

Hebrews 4:6-9

Sabbath rest to the people of God.

Hebrews 4:6-9

It is clear that there is a rest of God, and that some are to enjoy it, and as Israel did not attain to it, it still remains for God’s people. Oh, that we might by faith be of that number!

Hebrews 4:10

Resting in the finished work of Jesus we feel that our warfare is accomplished. The work we now do is of another kind from our own self-righteous work of former years. Our faith has introduced us into joyful rest.

Hebrews 4:11-13

We should earnestly labour to be right, for no deceptions will avail. The Lord’s word lays us bare and opens up our secret selves. Oh, to be clean before the Lord! This we can never be except by faith.

Hebrews 4:14

Since salvation work is complete, let us hold to it and enjoy the consequent blessings. We should be foolish indeed to leave such riches of grace.


With joy we meditate the grace

Of our High Priest above;

His heart is made of tenderness,

His bowels melt with love.


Then let our humble faith address

His mercy and his power,

We shall obtain delivering grace

In the distressing hour.


Get God in Focus

But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God. (Acts 7:55)

While many are busy trying to set forth satisfactory definitions of the word “faith,” we do well to simply consider that believing is directing the heart’s attention to Jesus!

It is lifting the mind to “behold the Lamb of God,” and never ceasing that beholding for the rest of our lives. At first this may be difficult, but it becomes easier as we look steadily at His wondrous Person, quietly and without strain.

Distractions may hinder, but once the heart is committed to Him the attention will return again and rest upon Him like a wandering bird coming back to its window.

I would emphasize this one great volitional act which establishes the heart intention to gaze forever upon Jesus. God takes this intention for our choice and makes what allowances He must for the thousand distractions which beset us in this evil world. So, faith is a redirecting of our sight, getting God in our focus, and when we lift our inward eyes upon God, we are sure to meet friendly eyes gazing back at us!


No Condemnation

“In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve.” Jer. 50:20

A glorious word indeed! What a perfect pardon is here promised to the sinful nations of Israel and Judah! Sin is to be so removed that it shall not be found, so blotted out that there shall be none. Glory be unto the God of pardons!

Satan seeks out sins wherewith to accuse us, our enemies seek them that they may lay them to our charge, and our own conscience seeks them even with a morbid eagerness. But when the Lord applies the precious blood of Jesus, we fear no form of search, for “there shall be none,” “they shall not be found.” The Lord hath caused the sins of His people to cease to be: He hath finished transgression, and made an end of sin. The sacrifice of Jesus has cast our sins into the depths of the sea. This makes us dance for joy.

The reason for the obliteration of sin lies in the fact that Jehovah Himself pardons His chosen ones. His word of grace is not only royal, but divine. He speaks absolution, and we are absolved. He applies the atonement, and from that hour His people are beyond all fear of condemnation. Blessed be the name of the sin-annihilating God!


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