I have been posting thanksgiving prayers and quotes on the Light for the Journey Facebook page all week and thought that you might enjoy some of my favourites. Don’t forget to check out my thanksgiving liturgy for this year too.
Let me start with my favourite thanksgiving scriptures:
And some other inspired prayers:
Thanksgiving is the holiday of peace, the celebration of work and the simple life… a true folk-festival that speaks the poetry of the turn of the seasons, the beauty of seedtime and harvest, the ripe product of the year — and the deep, deep connection of all these things with God. ~Ray Stannard Baker
Thou that hast given so much to me,
Give one thing more–a grateful heart:
Not thankful when it pleaseth me,
As if thy blessings had spare days,
But such a heart whose Pulse may be
~~George Herbert 1593-1633
For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
From the Book of Common Prayer:
Accept O Lord, our thanks and praise for all that you have done for us. We thank you for the splendour of the whole creation, for the beauty of this world, for the wonder of life, and for the mystery of love.
We thank you for the blessing of family and friends, and for the loving care which surrounds us on every side. We thank you for setting us at tasks which demand our best efforts, and for leading us to accomplishments which satisfy and delight us. We thank you also for those disappointments and failures that lead us to acknowledge our dependence on you alone.
Above all, we thank you for your Son Jesus Christ; for the truth of his word and the example of his life; for his steadfast obedience, by which he overcame temptation; for his dying, through which he overcame death; and for his rising to life again, in which we are raised to the life of your kingdom.
Grant us the gift of your Spirit, that we may know Christ and make him known; and through him, at all times and in all places, may give thanks to you in all things. Amen
A Catholic blessing (adapted from the liturgy and prayers for Thanksgiving Day):
Father, we join all creation, in heaven and on Earth, in praising you, our mighty God. You made man and woman in your own likeness and set them over your wonderful creation. You gave them a destiny, when you brought them out of bondage to a land of freedom, as they carried with them the promise that all would be blest and free. What the prophets pledged was fulfilled in Jesus Christ, your Son and our Lord.
It has come to pass in every generation, as it happened to our parents, who came to this land as if out of the desert into a place of promise and hope. It happened to those pilgrims and Native Americans who gathered in thanksgiving on that first Thanksgiving Day for the bounty of this land. And it happens to us still, as you call us to a vision of peace.
And so on this Thanksgiving Day, with hearts full of love, we give thanks for all the blessings we have received this past year. We offer this prayer of praise and thanksgiving through our Lord, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns forever and ever.
A beautiful Jewish Thanksgiving Prayer by Rabbi Naomi Levy.
For the laughter of the children,
For my own life breath,
For the abundance of food on this table,
For the ones who prepared this sumptuous feast,
For the roof over our heads,
The clothes on our backs,
For our health,
And our wealth of blessings,
For this opportunity to celebrate with family and friends,
For the freedom to pray these words
In any language,
In any faith,
In this great country,
Whose landscape is as vast and beautiful as her inhabitants.
Thank You, God, for giving us all these. Amen.
From TALKING TO GOD: Personal Prayers for Times of Joy, Sadness, Struggle, and Celebration (Alfred A. Knopf, New York);
You might also like to check out this beautiful prayer by Rabbi Marlee Gordon
I love this beautiful Native American Thanksgiving prayer:
Today we have gathered and we see that the cycles of life continue. We have been given the duty to live in balance and harmony with each other and all living things. So now, we bring our minds together as one as we give greetings and thanks to each other as People.
Now our minds are one. Read the entire prayer