I was surprised to discover that Thanksgiving was not established as a national holiday until 1863, more than two hundred forty years after the arrival of the Mayflower at Plymouth.  It is a testimony to the great leadership of President Abraham Lincoln who recognized that, in the midst of the Civil War, it was still important to be thankful. Perhaps times of turmoil are the most important times to make a conscious effort to be thankful.  What better way to divert our thoughts away from our problems?

Our country is facing another very difficult time in her history. As an optimist, I’m not alarmed.  We need only to study American history to realize we’ve repeatedly overcome even greater challenge.  An important key to our success as a country is a commitment to remain thankful for the freedom and opportunities we have.

I woke up today thinking about everything I’m thankful for.  That list will include my family, my God, and my job. My gratitude list will also include you. Have a happy Thanksgiving.

Matt Knisely

Matt Knisely is an Emmy Award–winning visual storyteller, creative director, and author who loves telling stories of the extraordinary. Make sure you check out his book Framing Faith, it helps connect the seemingly unconnected, see the beauty right in front of us, and revealing how to be present in the moment.

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