Why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving?


Ever wonder, why do we celebrate Thanksgiving? Like why is Thanksgiving important?

I'll bet you, when you finish reading this, you would have never thought of these answers in this unusual way before. So bear with me, you'll see some surprises along the way.

Forget the turkey for a minute, let's have some real food for thought.


3 Big Answers

Here's 3 answers to why thanksgiving is celebrated:

  1. To give thanks = "Thanks - giving".
  2. We're selfish.
  3. We're human.


The First Answer - Why is Thanksgiving Important?

Let me surprise and challenge you. Thanksgiving is not about

  • turkey - gobble, gobble, gobble
  • Pilgrims
  • colored corn, pumpkins, cornstalks
  • Indians
  • Columbus and his crew
  • football
  • turkey dinner and stuffing
  • a ship called the Mayflower, or was it the Nina, Pinta, or Santa Maria?
  • 1492 or 1942 (neither. Just checking to see if you're still awake.)
  • pumpkin pie - or sweet potato pie
  • fun and games
  • a big get-together

All of this is great, but it's not the real reason.


So why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving?

Break Thanksgiving into 2 words, Thanks Giving, and you see that Thanksgiving is a day to be giving thanks for the blessings we have received. More on this, further down on this page.


Why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving - 2nd Answer

The second answer is because we're very selfish.

I'll prove it to you. Ever since you and I were little babies, we only thought about me, me, poor little me. Or was it me, myself, and I?

We all start out very selfish. And for the rest of our lives, we have to learn and be reminded and corrected and made painfully aware that there are other people and their needs that we have to be concerned about.

We have to be constantly reminded to play fair, to share, to work as a team, to help others.

In fact, if we don't get out of our selfishness, we run the risk of becoming selfish brats, then criminals, and then narcissistic.

What's that word? It just means grown up people who think the whole world revolves around them. And most of the cruel dictator tyrants we see in history are narcissss ... whatever...

In other words, so selfish and self-absorbed that they think nothing of murder and cruelty and becoming control-freaks over other peoples' lives, as long as they get their own way.

( which is why the pilgrims came and lived such a hard life in America, to freely practice their religion and customs away from such control-freaking tyrants.)


Why Do We Celebrate Thanksgiving - The Antidote to Anarchy

Today we see a society that is quickly going from

  • selfishness - "Give me, give me, it's all about me."
  • to entitlement - "You owe it to me."
  • to sue happy, sue crazy - "I'll sue you if I don't get my way."
  • to aggression and road rage - "How dare you cut me off in traffic!"
  • to insane violence and murder - "I'll kill you over a nickel."


Why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving - Good and Bad Habits

Yes, we all are basically very selfish and have to overcome our selfishness to get out of ourselves...

... and, think long enough of other people to appreciate them and what they have given us - at least long enough for us to then genuinely thank them for it.

Because, giving thanks does not come naturally. It's actually the opposite of selfishness.

It takes hard work to think of others and give thanks to the point of it becoming a good habit.

Then when something becomes a good habit, it does become a little easier.

On the other end, it's real easy to be selfish. But the problem is, selfish people become arrogant and proud.

And nobody likes to work with people who are arrogant and proud. One reason is, they just don't want to listen to anyone else. They don't want to admit needing the help and gifts of other people.

When is the last time you saw someone arrogant and proud acknowledge their gifts and blessings coming from someone else? It doesn't happen. You can't be proud and humble at the same time.

You can't be arrogant and thankful at the same time.

It takes humility to be thankful.

And humility - which takes a lot of honesty - doesn't come naturally. It isn't something most of us are born with. We have to work at it.

How many times did teachers and parents have to remind us to be polite, to be thankful, and to say please and thank you, to say thank you for what we received? and "Don't forget to write Grandma a thank you note for the birthday gift."

Don't remember? Which is my third answer exactly.


Why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving - 3rd Answer

Because we're human.

No kidding, I'm speaking honestly here. We're human, and because we're human we tend to forget really important things, and unless we have holidays like Mother's Day and Fathers' Day, we probably wouldn't honor our parents as much as we should.

And if we didn't have Thanksgiving, we probably wouldn't be as thankful as we should.

Which reminds me, it should go without saying that we should be thankful every day, all year long, all 365 days a year, and 366 in Leap Years.

How many birthdays have you had?

Actually, all of us only had one. We actually are celebrating the anniversary of our birthdays, because I doubt many of us remember when we were born.

We all like to celebrate our birthdays, don't we? Have you ever thought that your birthday is also a very special day to thank and honor your parents, especially your mother? Because she was there when you were born, and it probably was not all that easy for your parents to take care of you.


Uh, Oh...

The way some people celebrate Thanksgiving, you wouldn't know it's Thanksgiving.

Let me ask, why do you look forward to Thanksgiving? To get out of work, school, to have a big holiday, to feast, to party?

Um, you're kinda sorta missing the boat in a big way. Better throw the anchor out and do some serious thinking, or your ship is heading for some big trouble.

For example, are you just sitting around waiting for Thanksgiving dinner, or are you helping?

Are you still in WIIFM mode - What's In It For Me mode, or are you chipping in to GIVE thanks by SHOWING your thanks, like helping with the dishes?

Do you sit down and pig out, or do you stop and pray to Our Creator, who gives us all these blessings?


Why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving?

Back to the first answer, Thanksgiving is important to celebrate God's blessings. To come to Him with a grateful heart. No blessing comes to us without Him. He's been waiting to hear from you and me.

And once a year is not enough for sure, but, it's a good time to put our thanks-giving into high gear.

And sure, it's a happy time to celebrate God's goodness to us.


Why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving - Make a List

People make lists all the time, so they don't forget. Grocery shopping, now that's an important list for Thanksgiving dinner. Don't want to miss a thing.

But everything on that list is peanuts, compared to some really BIG things to be thankful for.

Health. Life. Family. Friends.

Then, of course, there are material goods like property, house, car, clothes, things and stuff.

And yes. Life can be difficult without the essentials like food and water.


Why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving - Think of Others

Take one item like water. We really tend to take it for granted.

But around the world, 30,000 children die because of water. Every day !!!

They either don't have water to drink, or the water they do have is not clean. It's dirty, muddy, contaminated, or full of germs or chemicals.

And many of them walk miles every day, sometimes for hours, many have no shoes, just to get a little dirty water to drink. They carry it home in containers while most of us have running water.

Shoes. That's another thing. Many kids have no shoes.

Jobs. Billions of people in the world work hard all day for $2 or less.

Health. 10 percent of the world has disabilities. That's 600 million people. That's a lot of people.

Yes, we are very blessed. We owe a great debt of gratitude.


Q. Why do we Celebrate Thanksgiving?


A. To Thank Your Stars !


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