“O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever.” (Psalms 136:1).

Consider the Pilgrim Fathers and Mothers when they celebrated the first American “Thanksgiving.” Thanksgiving? How could they give thanks? They had suffered terribly on their long freedom-journey which began in the English countryside and ended on the rocky coast of New England. The “Speedwell,” one of the two boats they boarded at New Amsterdam, almost fell apart before it had moved very far from shore. They had to turn the boat around and those who still had heart for the voyage crowded into the Mayflower. They encountered terrible storms at sea. For almost the entire trip they remained below deck. They were short on food, short on medicine. The sanitation and ventilation were inadequate. The smell was bad. After their first harvest season, in the New Land, when they celebrated that first “Thanksgiving,” fully half their number had died.

We can all appreciate the hardships these…

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