Well, I don’t plan to write much, but at the moment seeing my wife work wonders in the kitchen while I sit here essentially useless has me inspired to say a few brief words.
The kids are recognizing one of the unintended consequences of our cutting ties to regular television fare to save a few bucks: No access to the broadcast networks’ Thanksgiving Day parades. (We’re purely a Roku/Netflix family now.)
I might hook up the computer to see if there is any simulcasting going on and, if so, connect the TV so they can watch them on the big screen. I’m sympathetic to the sentiment… In my house growing up, it was Thanksgiving Parades in the morning, then a walk down the alley to my grandmother’s house where the rest of my father’s side of the family would gather for food and football. Tom Landry was practically part of the family. The Smiths would watch the games on TV with the sound all the way down so that they could listen to the play-by-play on the radio, which they preferred to the TV announcers. (Does that count as a “multi-media experience”?)
For the Smiths, today–or at least this colony here in Ohio–football no longer plays a big part (though the Super Bowl seems to be discussed much on this blog: here, here. and here). Not that it is inherently evil (which I have covered before, more than once). I’ve just never been much of a sports guy–dodge ball, soccer, a little fencing, and competitive pencil sharpening excluded.
[Free admission: I may not be a sports guy, but I am a Texas Aggie, and it still seems very, very strange not to have Texas A&M playing t.u. on Thanksgiving, even if I usually didn't watch. All the more bittersweet since sports pundits seem to think that the Aggies would win such a match up this year--something the Longhorns have to be thankful for, I suppose. Psalm 75:10a!]
Regardless, I hope to help all of us here in the Smith Kingdom and our guests today to remember the day for its true purpose: Giving thanks to our Creator.
In an old Plain Truth magazine back in 1969, the Church once wrote:
“There is nothing necessarily wrong with good food, family reunions and football games on Thanksgiving Day. But all too many use these activities wrongly and forget the purpose for the holiday. Many glut themselves with far more food than they ought to eat; few, however, stop to give God thanks for this food — even on Thanksgiving Day.”
True then, true today.
There are those few–in a celebration of the post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy as well as, in some cases, other, less innocent motivations–who confuse the American Thanksgiving with pagan harvest festivals, falling for the same faulty arguments that some use to claim that the Feast of Tabernacles is pagan in origin. But the day’s clear path to its place on our calendar is easy to trace, and Thanksgiving is, truly, a national holiday that a Bible-believing Christian can celebrate. (Ditto for arguments that Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are pagan, which they most certainly are not.) What a shame, then, if those who are Bible-believing Christians fail to observe in the good and godly spirit it was originally intended, even if no one else is doing so.
So, however you choose to enjoy your time with family and friends today–whether it involves parades on TV or football in the backyard or whatever your own family traditions might be–I hope it includes some sincere thanks for God’s promises to Abraham and for the blessings this undeserving country continues to enjoy. Happy Thanksgiving!