Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving with the Family

We have done various things as a family to mark Thanksgiving. One key thing each year is to have a time for each family member to reflect on ways God has blessed us and particular things for which each one is thankful. It can be a challenge to get little ones focused but it is well worth it.

This year, following a suggestion from Doug Phillips, we read chapter 4 from William Bradford’s Of Plymouth Plantation where Bradford described the deliberation the Pilgrims on whether or not to leave Holland. The chapter is only five pages long but is a moving description of the challenges facing this group and their decision to risk great things trusting in a great God. It is moving to hear the potential challenges they faced from their own perspective. Fear was a great obstacle to overcome, and these people are powerful examples of gospel courage:

“though many desired to enjoy the ordinances of God in their purity &the liberty of the gospel, yet, alas, they preferred to submit to bondage, with danger to their conscience, rather than endure these privations.”
It was good as a family, also, to read of their concern for their children to continue in the faith. I also appreciated their long term vision of “planting the gospel” in America. They acknowledged they would not accomplish everything in their lifetime but they looked to the future.

This text was inspiring to me so I share it with you. Happy Thanksgiving, and may we pass on such faith, courage, and long term vision to those behind us.

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