Thanksgiving Day

Almighty and gracious Father, we give you thanks for the fruits of the earth in their season and for the labors of those who harvest them. Make us, we beseech thee, faithful stewards of thy great bounty, for the provision of our necessities and the relief of all who are in need, to the glory of thy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

First Lesson: Deuteronomy 8:1-3, 6-10(17-20)
Be careful to follow every command I am giving you today, so that you may live and increase and may enter and possess the land that the LORD promised on oath to your forefathers. Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD.

6 Observe the commands of the LORD your God, walking in his ways and revering him. For the LORD your God is bringing you into a good land--a land with streams and pools of water, with springs flowing in the valleys and hills; a land with wheat and barley, vines and fig trees, pomegranates, olive oil and honey; a land where bread will not be scarce and you will lack nothing; a land where the rocks are iron and you can dig copper out of the hills.

When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the LORD your God for the good land he has given you.

[17 You may say to yourself, "My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me." But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your forefathers, as it is today.

If you ever forget the LORD your God and follow other gods and worship and bow down to them, I testify against you today that you will surely be destroyed. Like the nations the LORD destroyed before you, so you will be destroyed for not obeying the LORD your God.]

Second Lesson: James 1:17-18, 21-27
Don't be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.

21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it--he will be blessed in what he does.

If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

Psalm: 65 or 65:9-14

  1. You are to be praised, O God, in Zion; *
    to you shall vows be performed in Jerusalem.
  2. To you that hear prayer shall all flesh come, *
    because of their transgressions.
  3. Our sins are stronger than we are, *
    but you will blot them out.
  4. Happy are they whom you choose and draw to your courts to dwell there! *
    they will be satisfied by the beauty of your house,
    by the holiness of your temple.
  5. Awesome things will you show us in your righteousness,
    O God of our salvation, *
    O Hope of all the ends of the earth
    and of the seas that are far away.
  6. You make fast the mountains by your power; *
    they are girded about with might.
  7. You still the roaring of the seas, *
    the roaring of their waves,
    and the clamor of the peoples.
  8. Those who dwell at the ends of the earth will tremble at your
    marvelous signs; *
    you make the dawn and the dusk to sing for joy.
  9. You visit the earth and water it abundantly;
    you make it very plenteous; *
    the river of God is full of water.
  10. You prepare the grain, *
    for so you provide for the earth.
  11. You drench the furrows and smooth out the ridges; *
    with heavy rain you soften the ground and bless its increase.
  12. You crown the year with your goodness, *
    and your paths overflow with plenty.
  13. May the fields of the wilderness be rich for grazing, *
    and the hills be clothed with joy.
  14. May the meadows cover themselves with flocks,
    and the valleys cloak themselves with grain; *
    let them shout for joy and sing.

Gospel: Matthew 6:25-33
"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?

"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

Collect & Psalm from the Book of Common Prayer
Other excerpts from the New International Bible

Holy Days