Did you ever think what the pilgrims did after Thanksgiving? They survived the harsh winter. By the time of Thanksgiving half of them had already died. In fact, only four women survived. With the help of the local natives, they learned how to fish and plant food in the ground.
Apparently, they remained in a good relationship with the natives. Still yet, they had to go back to their normal way of life. There was much hard work to do. There would be families to raise. There would need to be a way for them to govern themselves.
In short, after Thanksgiving their life was not that of celebration and relaxation. Many knuckles had to be scarred and calluses grown on hands to build a permanent settlement. In addition, they would need to be assured to continue honoring God in routine worship and service.
And what about the days after our Thanksgiving? We ate a hefty meal. We watched sports on TV. We had fellowship with those around the table. Perhaps there were those that did not have the opportunity of enjoying Thanksgiving. To them there was no celebration and perhaps no hefty meal. In either case it was a matter of getting back to what we call normal.
The pilgrims faced hard work and significant responsibility for themselves. Just because they had a great celebration did not mean everything afterwards would be easy. They would face the coming fall season and then another harsh winter.
After our Thanksgiving, what do we face? We have a pandemic. We have a questionable election for the president. We have a recent history of rioting, looting, and destroying private property. We have those that are calling for the defunding of police. We have a leader who supports wholesale immigration without persons going through the proper process of becoming residents in America. These new potential leaders want to reach down into the community life and confuse even the question of what gender would use what restroom. We likely have a national budget spending that has no control.
This almost sounds more bleak than what the pilgrims faced. They planted seeds, cut down trees, and build homes. We have a national community in chaos. We do not even have a local place of worship where to fellowship spiritually and together call on God. The Internet has taken the place of in person attendance at churches. There is every possibility that when the pandemic is over church attendance will be at a minimum and the influence of clergy will be decimated. At the worst scenario clergy may need to face the choice of holding their ground or recanting under government pressure.
All of this does sound foreboding! What we have in common with the pilgrims is what is most important. There is a God in heaven that knows our troubles and knows how to address them. Jesus said for those that are heavy laden to come to him. That means that we have an invitation and he has the ability to provide us comfort and direction. What may seem foreboding could be a time of screening out the hypocrites, the doubtful, the unredeemed, and the insincere.
More than ever this is the time to pull ourselves up by your bootstraps. As God said to Job, “stand up as a man.” Now is the time for us to be strong and dedicated and have a sincere relationship with God. Jesus said also, “I will never leave you or forsake you.” We are not alone in this mess and the true answers are not from our own cunning ideas.
Whatever problems and whatever time we live, now is the time to show how much of a Christian we really are!