Thanksgiving 2017

Thanksgiving 2017
George Washington prays for a new nation. Detail, J.C. Leyendecker for the Saturday Evening Post, 1935. (Via Pinterest.)

As Thanksgiving looms this year, a look back at Thanksgiving a year ago is illuminating.  Many Americans had a sense of relief and hope because Donald Trump, a decidedly unconventional candidate, had been elected president.  Others were in deep gloom over the same event.

A year later, that basic condition hasn’t changed.  Trump’s supporters are still, for the most part, relieved and happy that he is in office.  His opponents are still in deep gloom.

Across America, it seems that hardly anything we share in common can escape the coarsening of politicization.  If we wanted the personal and political to merge and become one — or if some of us did — that wish has been granted.

But on a day of thanksgiving, we can still choose to step out of time.  Instead of locating ourselves in November 2017, and letting that define all our meanings for us, we can stand before God and eternity and simply be thankful.

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I think it has been necessary for many of us in recent months — even years — to break loose from a sense of the chains of time, and envision hope in a larger way.  I doubt we can even articulate where this is going, exactly.  But the general sense is that we don’t navigate from the clues of day to day.  To know how to see, we have to know who we say God is, and what we can expect from Him.

Last year, I wrote about my reasons for emphasizing sunlight and hope on Thanksgiving.  This year, with all that tires us and weighs us down, I suggest doing that again.  God hasn’t changed.  Whatever lies beyond our current time of strange turmoil, it is brighter than the sun, while His Spirit is with His people.

Detail, N.C. Wyeth mural depicting the early Pilgrims (1940s, New York Metropolitan Life Insurance Company HQ). (Via, citation of N.C. Wyeth’s Pilgrims, by Robert San Souci)

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you, from Liberty Unyielding.

J.E. Dyer

J.E. Dyer

J.E. Dyer is a retired Naval Intelligence officer who lives in Southern California, blogging as The Optimistic Conservative for domestic tranquility and world peace. Her articles have appeared at Hot Air, Commentary’s Contentions, Patheos, The Daily Caller, The Jewish Press, and The Weekly Standard.