Harvest time thanks
November 7, 2011
by Jenni Sebora

And old rhyme goes like this: “The year has turned its circle, the seasons come and go. The harvest all is gathered in, and chilly north winds blow. Orchards have shared their treasures. The fields, their yellow grain, so open wide the doorway – Thanksgiving comes again.”

Our family enjoyed a very happy Halloween with other families who we share this holiday celebration with – children and adults, clad in costumes, a bonfire, hot apple cider, hot cocoa, and a wonderful hayride through town with lots of tricks and treats. This event is a Halloween tradition we started a few years back.

I love Halloween, but thoroughly enjoy the next holiday upon us.

The Halloween traditions are the start of the holiday season. Happy Halloween. Happy Thanksgiving. Merry Christmas.

The holiday season is here, and Thanksgiving is sandwiched in between two other very popular holidays. Thanksgiving may not get all of the attention it deserves in stores and in the public world, but I believe that it remains as important as any holiday we observe.

Thanksgiving is about appreciation and intrinsically and extrinsically focusing on that gratitude. It is a holiday that reminds us to give thanks for our own personal “harvests.”

In ancient times, people of many cultures gave their thanks for plentiful harvests.

In America, near the end of the Plymouth Colony’s first year in America, the settlers gave thanks for their bountiful first harvest. Pilgrims and natives celebrated together.

That first harvest most likely consisted of, not turkey, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie, but rather, duck, deer, geese, corn, fish, oysters, and berries.

Actually, Pilgrims recognized that everything they had was a gift from God. Thanksgiving is a tradition to honor and thank God for all of his blessings.

In 1863, Thanksgiving became an official holiday. During the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed Thanksgiving a national observance. This may have been a way for the president to brighten the spirits of the American people who were dealing with much hardship during this time.

Thanksgiving reminds us that although we experience hardships, we should look to what we can be thankful for – to have appreciative hearts. This was a thought that, I think, is worth pondering. Think of a year from now and not having the things you have now. I have a warm place to sleep. I have a job. I can walk. What if a year from now, I lost my house or my job? What if I lost my ability to walk or talk?

We all have different circumstances, but we all things to be gracious about and be thankful for. We work through the hard times with family and friends, and keep looking forward. Pilgrims gave thanks, not only for their bounty, but also for their sorrows and hardships, as they had many.

The harvest is in. The orchards have shared their treasures. Let us all open up the doorway to allow Thanksgiving in.

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