This morning I got a forward from my sister, with the words of George Washington's Thanksgiving Day Proclamation of 1789 in it. Thanksgiving Day apparently was intended as a day to thank God for His blessings to us as a nation, particularly in the forms of our independence and government. Not a word about turkeys or Pilgrims or anything else! (phew... i was really starting to question the sanity of a national holiday about a dinner which incidentally historically might not have happened quite the way it's been portrayed across thousands of elementary school stages, so i've heard...) :)
I will stay away from all the political ideals set forth in Washington's speech - I think they're cool, if more visionary than practical, but my general approach to politics is to stay out of them - and I've no wish to start a debate. But I will say that I find it interesting that the secondary purpose of the original holiday was to, as a nation, come before God with repentant hearts for our national transgressions as well as our personal ones. Imagine if we actually did that! If, like the nation of Israel did so often in Scripture, an entire nation - anywhere in the world - told God they were sorry and honestly looked to Him for direction.... like I said, it's visionary. :) But fun to dream about a world in which that could happen...
There were several other points of note in Washington's speech - there's probably an entire book of historical/political commentary that could be written on his various points, but what really jumped out at me was how the proclamation ended: with a prayer/hope that God would "generally...grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best." It was those last seven words that leapt off the page for me... "as He alone knows to be best."
Those are such faithful words... expressing the reality that God is to be trusted...
There are any number of places I could take this post right now. I've mentally gone down the rabbit trail already (and deleted it) about world hunger, and the Church's need to respond to the things in the world that are not God's best for mankind... and why those things exist, and how Washington's statement could be argued against, etc.... but that isn't where I want to go. All I want to convey is that sometimes I don't trust God to know what's best for me - and I want to.
I told Faintnot this last night - I could feel God's Spirit most of yesterday tugging at my heart to come away, to be quiet, to listen. There are things He wants to say - things I need to hear - things to be done - things to be learned. I have been in a season of constant heartache/heartbreak for over a month now, and it is time to come out of that. I don't understand entirely what it is my heart is breaking over - and I think God wants me to begin to "get it" now... so I am stepping out into a season of "Shhhhh....-ness" and waiting... waiting. Or trying to, anyway. :)
Perfect timing. It's almost Advent.