Open the Thanksgiving Window - The Warrior's Journey®

Open the Thanksgiving Window

Author: Brenda Pace, Author of "Journey of a Military Wife"

Window Of Opportunity. Photo by Marines is licensed under CC By 2.0

Praise and thanksgiving is our acknowledgement of God’s help and presence

Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might. He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding; he reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what is in the darkness and the light dwells with him. To you, O God of my fathers, I give thanks and praise, for you have given me wisdom and might, and have now made known to me what we asked of you, for you have made known to us the king’s matter.” (Daniel 2:20–23)

In the midst of the greatest transition ever undertaken by the United States, General George Washington issued a General Order on November 30, 1777 stating in part:

Forasmuch as it is the indispensable duty of all men, to adore the superintending providence of Almighty God; to acknowledge with gratitude their obligations to him for benefits received, and to implore such further blessings as they stand in need of; and if having pleased him in his abundant mercy, not only to continue to us the innumerable bounties of his common providence, but also, to smile upon us in the prosecution of a just and necessary war, for the defense of our unalienable rights and liberties.

It is therefore recommended by Congress, that Thursday the 18th Day of December next be set apart for Solemn Thanksgiving and Praise; that at that time, and with one voice, the good people may express the grateful feelings of their hearts …1

During a time of war, with all the hardships that it brings, one may wonder why General Washington and Congress would exhort the people of our struggling nation to have grateful feelings in their hearts and express their gratitude to God.

We could pose the same question concerning Daniel, a captive serving in a foreign land separated from family and friends. The United States gave thanks in the middle of the Revolutionary War because they believed God was helping them and would continue to do so. Daniel believed the same. He gave thanks in a time when his life was on the line—interpret the king’s dream or die. He gave thanks to God for giving him a revelation of the dream. God’s answer to Daniel’s prayer showed his personal involvement in Daniel’s life. Daniel spontaneously sang a hymn of thanksgiving to God for making wisdom available in his time of need.2

In Girl Meets Change, former military wife Kristen Strong describes the role of thanksgiving in the midst of transition: “When change wipes all the natural light from the rooms of my heart, being thankful is the way to usher it back in.… We understand that when change plants us in a windowless room, gratitude gives us a window to welcome the light …”3

Praise and thanksgiving is our acknowledgement of God’s help and presence. God entered Daniel’s situation and brought the light of his power and wisdom. Sister, his wisdom is available to you; his greatness is yours to experience! Hallelujah!


How can thanksgiving help you thrive in transition? Write your own proclamation of thanksgiving and share it with your family.

Prayer for the Journey

“I will give to the Lord the thanks due to his righteousness, and I will sing praise to the name of the Lord, Most High” (Psalm 7:17). Amen.

1 The George Washington Papers at the Library of Congress, 1741–1799, (DOCID+@lit(gw100134) (accessed August 31, 2015).
2 Joyce G. Baldwin, Daniel: An Introduction and Commentary (Leicester, England: Inter-Varsity Press, 1978), 90–91.
3 Kristen Strong, Girl Meets Change (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2015), 110–111.

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