Who are we thanking?


Genevieve Guenther

Ava Hicks, Staff Writer

Editor’s Note: Ava Hicks is a junior at UNCW studying Communications with a minor in Journalism. Ava also serves as a staff writer for The Seahawk and a regular columnist for Gospel Gab. The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author. All suggestions and inquiries may be sent via email to [email protected]

The whole story behind the American Thanksgiving holiday always seemed a little fishy to me. The event that led to the creation of the holiday was actually the Pequot Massacre, a horrendous slaughter of over 700 Native Americans by the Plymouth Colony pilgrims. The day after the massacre, the governor declared a day of Thanksgiving to celebrate their victory.

Not only are we honoring a form of genocide, but we top it off by eating a gluttonous amount of food and then lying around complaining about how much we ate. I understand that the point is to recognize how thankful we are that we have the means to eat massive amounts of food, but there is just something a little off about our celebration.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my pumpkin pie as much as the next gal, but I think it is important to focus on the true meaning of Thanksgiving. Its roots go back a whole lot farther than the pilgrims and are a little more lighthearted.

It all began when God created man. After all, He created man to praise and worship Him. That is the sole purpose of our existence here on Earth and what we are supposed to convey through all of our actions. Therefore, our purpose is to display gratitude and give thanks.

First Thessalonians 5:18 says, “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

However, we humans have been total failures in dedicating our lives to celebrate His glory. From the beginning of time we have been sinful and ungrateful, which explains why Adam and Eve took the forbidden fruit in the first place. They weren’t satisfied with everything that God had given them and desired more, so their greed caused them to disobey God and introduce sin into the world.

We, as all creation, are a failure at what God designed us to be. Thankfully, God also created a way for us to be redeemed from our terminal ingratitude.

He sent His son Jesus to Earth to live a perfect life full of gratitude and thanks giving. Every action that Jesus took and every word that escaped His lips was intended to glorify the Lord. He lived the life free of sin that no other being on Earth could ever achieve.

Thankfully, because Jesus lived without sin and was crucified on the cross, we are eternally forgiven for our extreme neglect of our Savior. The acceptance of Christ into our hearts and the belief that we can truly be forgiven because of His sacrifice is all that it takes to receive His ultimate gift. What more do we need to be thankful for?

So, when you are digging into that turkey and going back for thirds at the dessert table, keep in mind the true meaning of Thanksgiving and how it is the very purpose for which we were created.

Colossians 3:15–17 says, “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”