When President Lincoln declared a national day of Thanksgiving in the midst of the American Civil War, a series of editorials written by Sarah Josepha Hale inspired him. This commemoration of gratitude was to be celebrated on the 26th, the final Thursday of November 1863.

Interesting…do you recall hearing that Sara Hale’s writing created such an effect on the President? I didn’t…and it’s one more example of how our writing can be used. Maybe she intended this, or perhaps the outreach of her writing surprised her.

Tomorrow I’ll be in Story City, Iowa with a group of hearty souls undertaking memoir writing. We’ll be crafting a Christmas memoir, and of course, each participant’s will be unique. Our own personal take on life is so vital…we share our perspective.  And as Sarah Josepha Hale instructs us, who knows how much that viewpoint may affect others?

My books arrived last week…and that brings me to gratitude. Ah, yes. For the desire and determination required to research stories, and for the joy involved. For my husband, who pays the bills, for the easy availability of facts and stories from World War II, for a cousin, sister, and friends who encourage me, for my publisher, and for readers who allow my characters into their lives.

All these gifts shower upon me, and I’m so thankful…

“…we plow the fields and scatter the good seed on the land, but it is fed and watered by God’s almighty hand…” Matthias Claudius, 1782, translated by Jane M. Campbell, 1861. Thanks to these two people for unleashing their creativity. I wonder if they thought their words would still be sung by churchgoers in 2018…

Who knows how our gifts sent out into the world might be used? Our task is to simply keep sending them. 

A week of Thanksgiving lies ahead–may yours be full of good memories.

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