Let's Take Back Thanksgiving!!

This devotion offers Inspiration and ideas for focusing on Christ and the true meaning of Thanksgiving.

When living in Budapest, we always celebrated Thanksgiving with international friends. It was fun to explain the holiday’s Christian foundation and assure folks it was the one holiday in America that hadn’t been commercialized. 

It's not that I hadn't heard of Black Friday when we lived in Budapest, but it wasn't the major event it is today. Unfortunately, Black Friday now threatens to gobble up Thanksgiving.

Why did a day to commemorate Christian saints (All Saints' Day) become costumes, witches and candy? 

Why did Easter become bunnies and egg hunts? 

Why did Christ’s birth become Santa's day?

Sometimes we forget that we have an enemy whose entire goal is to steal glory and attention from Christ (John 10:10).

Let's not help him.

Let’s take back the territory Satan has taken from us, starting today! 

May Christ reign in our Thanksgiving celebrations. 

With grateful hearts, let’s focus on the Giver of all good things! (James 1:17)
How do you incorporate the true meaning of Thanksgiving into your celebration? Why not leave your ideas in a comment. Thanks!

Here are a few of my ideas:
We start our meal with 5 kernels of corn on every plate and share the true story found HERE
We paint a Thanksgiving pumpkin - more HERE.
We encourage children or grandchildren to write a list of things for which they're thankful and save those lists to re-read each year.

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Bible Love Notes
This devotion offers Inspiration and ideas for focusing on Christ and the true meaning of Thanksgiving.


  1. I'm so with you, Gail! Love your post! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  2. Hi Gail, you may delete this comment after reading it if you like, I don't wish to take away your credibility. But research the beginnings of said holidays and Easter. Non of them have Christian beginnings. That being said: I love Christmas and despite its not so Christian beginnings, we celebrate it wholeheartedly as the birth of Christ. Same with Easter.

    1. Hi Kendra,
      Actually, I'm going to leave this comment because I think it adds some needed explanation to what I've written.

      I've also researched the origins of holidays and realize there is evidence that some may have been attempts to Christianize pagan holidays. However, there is some disagreement even among the experts (see one example: http://toddpruitt.blogspot.com/2009/12/christmas-is-not-pagan-holiday.html).

      But, even if all of our holidays had pagan origins, they were successfully turned into meaningful "holy days" in the Church with a focus on Christ.

      And even if some pagan symbols remain, no one worships them as such (i.e. no one worships trees or bunnies or eggs).

      Halloween is an exception, but only in the U.S. I've lived in Germany and Hungary for a total of 8 years and the Catholic Church in Europe celebrates All Saints Day, but the only mention of Halloween is in reference to the American holiday. And I agree that Halloween still maintains many of its pagan roots/symbols/practices.

      So, I'm glad you mentioned this Kendra because it's good to add to what I've written.
      Instead of saying our Christian holidays have been secularized, perhaps I should have said: Christians redeemed pagan holidays, but they have again become secularized.

      Thanks, Gail

    2. Here's another good link if any of my readers want to read more about pagan origins of holidays.

      From CRI/Hank Hanegraaff, a quick read:


      Click "Christmas" at the bottom of this post where it says "Filed Under" and you will get an archive of articles about the meaning of Christmas.

      And I would encourage people with questions about the holidays to read articles that give a full range of opinions, not simply one. It's easy to get caught up in one side of a debate without hearing all the facts and seeing other perspectives.

      Happy goggling : )

  3. Thanksgiving, a true Christian holiday and it sure does get gobbled up by black Friday. Why is it we can no longer be thankful for even one day? Instead we are thankful just long enough to eat a big meal and then we suddenly have all these wants and have to go get more stuff. Pathetic.

  4. My wife purchased a table cloth when my boys were younger. Each Thanksgiving, we celebrate by having all family and friends who join us, sign the table cloth with their name, at least one thing they’re thankful for and the year we are celebrating. I BELIEVE we are going on a ten year tradition - or close to it. :-) We take time to reflect on this cloth before each Thanksgiving meal and our new friends get to see what our old friends wrote. We are constantly reminded of how much to be thankful for each and every year!

  5. Take back Thanksgiving? Answer me this. If you were a non-believer celebrating Thanksgiving would the phrase “let’s take back thanksgiving” feel inclusive or exclusive to you?? Christianity - truly following the footsteps of Christ - isn’t about claiming territory or taking things back and hiding them under a bushel. It’s about welcoming everyone to the table. Everyone. Even the ones commercializing it. It’s what Christ would have done.

    1. Jo Mi,
      Your comment is completely out of line and off topic.

      This devotion has nothing to do with refusing to invite non-believers to our Thanksgiving celebration. It very clearly speaks about keeping Christ in the holidays that originated in Christ.