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Time to Give Thanks Print E-mail
by Wes Riddle    Mon, Nov 21, 2011, 08:18 AM

It is time to give God thanks, and Thanksgiving is what He wants from us in America .  “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (New King James Version Bible, 1 Thes. 5:18).  Indeed, it is a small sacrifice to express our thanks, but one He very highly regards.  “Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name” (Heb. 13:15). 

Sincere thanks flows from the heart.  It emanates, as it were, from our inward being.  God knows us there in the inward part already, but He likes to hear it just the same!  One of many mysteries, is gratitude—how expressed in words, spoken or in thought, improves the soul.  For when all is well with one’s soul, one is necessarily thankful and full of thanksgiving. 

Thanksgiving resonates with Spirit and enters us into a kind of mutual recognition twixt Creator and creation.  God looks for this connection, a connection joined by just such a small thing as giving Him thanks.  Jesus said, “But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him” (John 4:23). 

Surely, the Lord deserves our utmost gratitude.  Consider that we ought to give Him thanks, because we live in a free society where ballots, not bullets, determine who governs.  We ought to give thanks too for all the armed forces; and for those, who have taken on a generational post 9-11 burden.  Give thanks for their strength and courage.  Pray for the young men and women, who are answering the nation’s call in the War on Terrorism. 

Give thanks for having enough to eat, for the shoes upon your feet; thanks for clothing upon your back, and for the existence of shelter to keep you safe and warm.  Thanks for pleasant hours of sleep, uninterrupted by fits or jolts of fear.  Thanks to God moreover, for freedom to worship in church and in the public square—our square still, in the Year of Our Lord 2011

Thanks for the light that has not gone out, however far we’ve strayed as individuals and as a country.  Give thanks my fellow American, if you’ve got a job and reasonable opportunity to excel.  Give thanks for health; if you’re doing better in recovery.  If married for a little (or long) while, let God hear about the love that fills your heart for your other, better half; about the pride and joy you have in your children.  And may God bless the children always—praise Him if you’ve been gifted in this way even to have children, for many have not been so blessed.

Many will go to bed hungry tonight too, without a proper home or shelter.  Many know the sting of unemployment—a dimming sense of self-worth, the loss of dignity, the onset of feeling hopeless.  Many others are ill today, injured or in pain; or they have loved ones hurting, sick or dying.  Half of America ’s homes and hearts are breaking now at this moment, through divorce or separations.  Adults suffer the awful sadness and depression, and innocent children may bear emotional wounds even longer.  Odds are you have found here one or two reasons to give thanks—if only because you’ve been spared.

Give thanks the more, I say, if you have learned a hard lesson and grown better for it.  If you have felt the slamming of one door, propelling you through another by God’s grace.  If you have cried and cried, but found your smile one near, or distant, “Morning after.”  It is time to give thanks, because we are alive and free and able to pursue dreams.  For life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are the natural rights given us by God and protected by our magnificent, divinely inspired Constitution. 


Wesley Allen Riddle is a retired military officer with degrees and honors from West Point and Oxford .  Widely published in the academic and opinion press, he serves as State Director of the Republican Freedom Coalition (RFC).  His newly released book, Horse Sense for the New Millennium is available on-line at and from fine bookstores everywhere.  Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .  


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