Four centuries ago, in places like Jamestown, Virginia, and Massachusetts Bay Colony, Thanksgiving was about much more than Black Friday sales.
In the 1600s, Americans thanked Almighty God for the blessings of a good harvest and sufficient stores and shelter for the coming winter. In the early days of our Republic, Presidents Washington, Madison, Adams and Lincoln all called for days of thanksgiving and prayer, during and after bloody conflicts that tested our citizens.
In 1942, during WWII, Americans began to celebrate Thanksgiving as a national holiday on the fourth Thursday of November. Though some now consider this an archaic custom, I ask you to join me in gratitude for bounty beyond measure and resources too vast to quantify, which our Lord has bestowed upon our fruitful land.
We're grateful to live among the freest, most prosperous, diverse and generous population on earth. We give thanks for our soldiers, sailors, airmen, guardsmen, Marines and law enforcement serving in harm's way on land, sea and in the air, protecting us and our God-given freedoms.
We're grateful the U.S. Constitution is the law of our land; for citizens who know our God-given individual rights come with personal responsibilities; for countrymen who proudly stand, hands over our hearts, to honor our nation's flag and anthem.
And Lord, I thank You for more than 5 million law-abiding citizens of this blessed land who are members of the National Rifle Association—men and women who know preserving our Second Amendment is vital to securing our entire Bill of Rights.
For all this, Dear Lord, we give thanks.
Enjoy this wonderful time with your family and friends. And know this: I am forever grateful for your continued support and for all you've done to preserve our freedom. You have my hope and prayers for a Happy Thanksgiving.