I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. This is my favorite holiday because it is for families to enjoy together, giving thanks for being together.  

The origins of Thanksgiving are known to many of us, and I would say, all of us except for the obvious ignorance of a great number of our population today who cannot identify the first President of the United States.

Hopefully most of you will enjoy a family reunion of some sort this year. Although, it is difficult for many families to gather because of distance and other situations which prevent being together.

I hope you will remember those who are in the military who are deployed to different countries, or on ships strung throughout the world.  I relate to the Navy and remember many Thanksgivings away from home, followed by Christmas, and sometimes Easter.  Normal deployments aboard aircraft carriers, during that time, was nine to eleven months.  Other services were close to yearlong deployments, but regardless, being away from home was difficult at best.  

This morning, as I read my Bible, the story of the prodigal son was the scripture, found in Luke, the 15th chapter.  I thought of how that father felt as he celebrated the return of his son, and I thought there was a relationship between that festival of thanksgiving to ours today.

I believe Thanksgiving is for families to reunite, if even for a day. Maybe because of distance it can only be in thought or prayer, but somehow the focus should be on the family unit.  There can be an element of sadness or frustration because of different lifestyles, but for one day, a time set aside for love and remembrance would be nice.

I certainly understand the sadness of families who have been torn because of drugs or alcohol. Other things, such as crime or disease may be robbing you of the benefits of family, not only the immediate family, but also the family of church members. None of us are without problems and sadness to some extent, but we do have the benefit of grace, through the blood of Jesus Christ.

 Galatians 5:19-21 tells us all the things which will separate us from the salvation that Christ has provided for us.  Furthermore, I think these are the very same things which divide families and society.  

Healing for us, as individuals, family, and country are possible.  However, I think it must first occur in our own hearts and minds before we can benefit others.  I can forgive others, but if I don’t show it through my actions and words, then it will not be profitable to me or to others.  

I know that families are torn asunder because of a multitude of problems that we just can’t seem to get over.  Maybe we will never understand the other persons situation, but maybe, for one day, we can exhibit an attempt to heal the wounds that drive us apart. 

I believe all things are possible through God. I must remind myself of that when I look at the situation that our government is in at this time.  I pray that God’s will be done concerning all that I don’t or can’t understand. I suppose that should also be our prayer when we remember our families and friends during our quiet moments with our Father in Heaven.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you. I pray you will have a wonderful day and enjoy each other without thinking of “Black Friday”. I just had to say that.

God bless you, Charlton County and the USA.