Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

November 22, 2013

It's not too late

By Pastor Sharon Heien Fairview Church of the Brethren
The Daily Iowegian

---- — The day after Thanksgiving, “Black Friday.”

Where did it get that title? I had to Google it.

The most logical history, considering it is the biggest shopping day of the year, is that merchants hoped to end the day in the “black” (financial profit), rather than in the “red” (financial loss).

The report the past few years is that the declining economy hadn’t seemed to slow the buying on this day. Merchant’s accounts are likely in the “black.”

I find it interesting that we move from a day of giving thanks to the frenzy of crowds, competing for “things” that, in many cases, no one really needs, but at the time seem of vital importance.

If you are a part of the Black Friday shopping crowd, it isn’t too late to stop and “thoughtfully” be thankful for being physically able to endure the day and financially able to pay for it, and more.

If you are among the many who can’t or don’t choose to embrace such an event, it isn’t too late for you to stop and “thoughtfully” be thankful.

The first thanksgiving celebrated after the Mayflower arrived at Cape Cod happened after the survivors endured a hard winter.

Malnourished and weak, they had been greeted by a couple of English speaking Native Americans, learned from them how to grow corn, hunt for local game, fish in the rivers, avoid poisonous plants and were introduced to other Indian tribes, and had produced a bountiful harvest.

William Bradford organized a celebration for giving thanks to God.

The Native Americans were invited to the event that lasted several days. The tribes brought deer and other foods.

The new Americans prepared foods from their abundant crops.

What a celebration! A new land, new friends, lots of food — what reasons to thank God!

Another year harvest was not as plentiful, weather was not so cooperative, many hardships fell upon them.

Thanksgiving harvest time came again. Some say they shared only a few kernels of corn for the meal that day.

But, you know what? They celebrated! They thanked God! It was from out of their heart, not out of their abundance, the kind of “giving thanks” God longs for.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 tells us, “Always be joyful. Keep on praying, No matter what happens, always be thankful, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”

Ephesians 1:3-14 tells us we are no longer God’s enemies. We have actually been adopted into His family, and Nothing can break that relationship.”

Take a look at Psalm 100. It isn’t too late to celebrate Thanksgiving today, or any day.

And while you do, while you thank God for the blessings and the needs, thank God just for being God.