Though I’ve always considered the family Thanksgiving meal as something special, I’ve never put much advance thought into the blessing; it just came to me when we bowed our heads around the table. For some reason, this year’s prayer seems more significant for me, and I’ve been thinking about how best to capture the importance of gratitude in a few short sentences.
Most of us find it easy to be thankful for our family, friends, faith and life in this great nation. And it’s good to express gratitude for these gifts and contemplate their importance, particularly on Thanksgiving Day, because it’s so easy to take them for granted. Perhaps the easiest to take for granted is the nation we call home. And while virtually all of us appreciate how fortunate we are to live in the U.S., I think we often don’t fully appreciate how the fullness of the other gifts we enjoy is due to the freedom we often take for granted. Freedom equates to opportunity and that is the basis and foundation for the American dream and all it offers.
I love the study of history, which is replete with stories of great civilizations and peoples who lost the control of their lives, fortunes and dreams to totalitarian forces. Our freedom should never be taken for granted. To preserve it demands vigilance and diligence. It is, after all, the inherent nature of government to strive for more control over citizens, even if it might be well-intentioned.
My prayer for you is that on this Thanksgiving Day you will be surrounded by family and friends, that your faith will be renewed, and that you can truly express the gratitude you feel for all the blessings bestowed on you. And I pray that we all will appreciate those who sacrificed to allow us to have these blessings. In all the hectic happenings of daily life, we should never forget the importance of family, friends, faith and freedom. It is up to us to honor, defend and preserve these tenets against any and all who want to take them. For history also teaches us that to whom much is given, much is expected.
Appreciation is a powerful force; it leads to action, to the creation of a better future, and it precludes regret. It is a lack of appreciation that allows us to lose our family, friends, faith and freedoms. In today’s world none of those can be taken for granted because they are truly under attack.
So, this Thanksgiving, I’ll say a special word of thanks for this great industry, this great lifestyle, and the opportunity we have not only to feed the world but to work daily with God’s creation. I’ll also thank those who sacrificed to make it all possible.
Subscribe now to Cow-Calf Weekly to get the latest industry research and information in your inbox every Friday!
I hope you and yours have a great Thanksgiving. Remember that it is not what is seen, heard or tasted; it is what is felt that makes the day special. May we all give a little of ourselves in appreciation to those who mean and have given so much to us.
The opinions of Troy Marshall are not necessarily those of beefmagazine.com and the Penton Agriculture Group.
You might also like: