Sometimes it’s hard to see the forest for the trees..Thanksgiving

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Happy Thanksgiving! Today marks the beginning of the season focused on acknowledging our blessings, family and sharing our fortune with others. A wonderful time of year.

Amid the turkey pardoning, sweet potato pie preparation, football and anticipation for black Friday; it’s sometimes hard to remember why we have the day off and long weekend ahead. I won’t keep you long because there are families to get to, finishing touches to put on that bird and all manner of celebratory items to complete; but here’s a brief history of how we got to where we are.

Lincoln declared Thanksgiving as a holiday in 1863. The declaration in part reads:

“…and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years, with large increase of freedom. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by the whole American people.  I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.” – Abraham Lincoln

Until just now as I type this I never realized Thanksgiving was created in response to the abundant fortune the country was experiencing at the time. I think it’s ironic that 1863 is the same year the Emancipation Proclamation was signed into law – the document widely credited for freeing the slaves in America. A year perhaps for those of African decent to be doubly thankful.

During this time where we are in very heated discussion about our freedoms, and how we protect them and the pillars on which this country was founded, I believe it’s important to recognize that we are still blessed as a country. We are in tough times, but we will overcome. Dont’ let the beauty of the forest that is this great nation be overshadowed by the trees that we must manage day to day.

So as you celebrate today, and this time each year, keep in mind that we are still abundantly blessed and I think we our collective fortune should continue to be “reverently and gratefully acknowledged.”  Happy Thanksgiving!

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