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J. CORSON MILLER
American poet
(1883 - )

It should be the aim of Christian people, in all their keeping of the day, whether in the sacred gladness of the home, in public services in church or Sunday-school, or in festivities of whatever kind, to have the true meaning of Christmas remembered, that the influence of the child Jesus may pervade all the thought of the day. So should it be with Thanksgiving day. To leave God out is to make the day an empty name without meaning. Thanksgiving is nothing if not a glad and reverent lifting of the heart to God in honor and praise for His goodness. As an annual festival it is meant to gather into one day the gratitude of a nation for the favors and mercies of a year. This does not imply that we can put all our thanksgiving for a year into one day. We may not be murmurers for three hundred and sixty-four days, and then atone for our ingratitude by praising and blessing God for one whole day. The normal Christian life is one whose thanksgiving fills every day of the year with song and gladness.
      - [Thanksgiving Day]

Let us give it (the new year) nothing to keep which will not prove an honor to God's name and a blessing to the world; nothing which we shall not be willing to learn of again when we stand before the great white throne.
      - [New Year's Day]

No thanksgiving is complete without its generous thought of those who are not so favored as we are. The truly grateful heart always thinks of giving blessing to some other. Says George MacDonald: "When God comes to man, man looks around for his neighbor." Our own Thanksgiving dinner will be sweeter if we have shared it with another household. An unshared meal on this glad day will not bring its best possible blessing.
      - [Thanksgiving Day]

Yet it is meet and proper that a nation should set apart an annual day for national giving of thanks. It is a public recognition of God as the Author of all prosperity. It is the erection of a memorial to the honor of him who has led us through another year. The annual proclamations which call to the duty of thanksgiving are calculated to remind the people of their indebtedness to God, to stir in their minds and hearts emotions of gratitude and praise, and to call out thanks and sincere worship which otherwise might not find expression. But if the observance of the day be not marked by real remembering of mercies and by real lifting of hearts to God in thanks, what blessing can possibly come with it?
      - [Thanksgiving Day]


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