Dan Graves, in a November 26, 2013 blog post on the Christian History Magazine web site ( gives us the history of Thanksgiving Day as celebrated here in the U.S.A:


Thanksgiving as a national observance began near the end of a terrible war and was largely owing to one woman. Sarah Hale was a novelist and the editor of women’s magazines. For seventeen years she appealed to mayors, pastors, governors, missionaries, and presidents for a set day of thanksgiving in all the states and wherever United States citizens resided.

            Every president ignored her. Every president until Abraham Lincoln, that is. In the midst of the Civil War, he read the appeal of the seventy-four-year-old woman and agreed. On October 3, 1863—one hundred and fifty years ago this year—he issued a proclamation calling all Americans to observe the last Thursday of November as a day of thanksgiving. Among the reasons he gave for thanks was the fact that no foreign nation had entered the war.

            “No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People.”

            Our nation has held Thanksgiving ever since on the fourth Thursday of November. Although one could argue that every day should be a day of thanks, a special day is worth observing, both to enjoy a communal celebration of God’s goodness and to remind ourselves to express appreciation to the giver of our blessings. As we share Thanksgiving this year, let us “solemnly, reverently, and gratefully” thank God for his benefits and mercies—and for those ancestors who paved this pathway of gratitude for us.


We know from Scripture that thanksgiving is to be a continual activity and not just one day of the year. I Thessalonians 5:18 says “give thanks in all circumstances.” There is great benefit to us individually and corporately when we cultivate thankful hearts.

To that end please join with other believers from our church, as well as sister churches here in Houston County, Perry Presbyterian Church and Covenant Presbyterian Church, this Sunday night at 6P M for a special service of Thanksgiving. This will be followed by a reception at which time you can enjoy the fellowship of other believers. This has become a wonderful tradition for all three churches and I sincerely hope to see you there!