Do you remember the names William Brewster and John Robinson from high school? Tomorrow we celebrate one of the great holidays of our land. These men had a vision of freedom back in 1608, setting off to Holland to create a new life, free from the restrictions of King James and the Church of England. 12 years later they set a new course for America – this time not to find freedom, but to separate from some of the society ills they experienced in Holland.
The leadership demonstrated by these men should be remembered as you enjoy your time away from work, gathering with family and friends. Leaving behind wealth and possessions, the pilgrims set out on July 22, 1620 – 102 men, woman, and children. Over half of these people died in the first winter, yet the remaining group was determined to make this work. Building homes, meetings halls, and developing their first legal document, they agreed to work together to establish a society in the Northeastern part of the US. They faced unfriendly natives, their meeting house burned to the ground (filled with patients who all managed to escape), and severe weather nearly wiped them out; yet they persisted through that first winter.
Working through the summer, mentored by a friendly Indian named Squanto, the Pilgrims were able to establish crops, rebuild buildings, and prepare adequately for the coming winter. It was that fall, with an abundant harvest, that the Pilgrims joined together in the first Thanksgiving meal. The day began with a prayer of thanksgiving, led by William Brewster; to thank God for all that He had done for them and for their friendship with the Indians. The feast lasted three days and continues on as a tradition for many of us. Enjoy your Holiday – Blessings to you and your family all over the world.
- – Dave