by Steve Wagers

This content is part of a series.

What A Way To Say Thanks! (4 of 5)
Series: Money Talks, but What Does It Say?
Pastor Steve N. Wagers
1 Chronicles 29: 1-9

1. Nearly half a century ago, President Dwight Eisenhower proclaimed "Thanksgiving" as a time when Americans should celebrate "the plentiful yield of our soil . . . the beauty of our land . . . the preservation of those ideals of liberty and justice that form the basis of our national life, and the hope of international peace."

2. In 1621 in New England, the Pilgrims gave thanks to God, in whom they placed their hope, even though a bitter winter had taken many of their brethren. In the winter of 1777, General George Washington and his army, having just suffered great misfortune, stopped near Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, to give thanks to God. And there, in the throes of great difficulty, they found the hope they needed to persevere. That hope in freedom eventually inspired them to victory. 1

3. In 1789, President Washington, recollecting the countless blessings for which our new Nation should give thanks, declared the first National Day of Thanksgiving.

In 1817 New York State adopted Thanksgiving Day as an annual custom. And, in 1863, with the Nation embroiled in a bloody civil war, President Abraham Lincoln revived what is now an annual tradition of issuing a presidential proclamation of Thanksgiving. Since then each president has issued a Thanksgiving Day proclamation, usually designating the fourth Thursday of each November as the holiday. President Lincoln asked God 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, tranquility, and Union." It was then, finally, in 1941, that Congress officially declared that the 4th Thursday of November would be nationally recognized as "Thanksgiving Day."

4. Last year, President George Walker Bush issued his Thanksgiving proclamation:

"In thankfulness and humility, w ...

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