Thanksgiving is a time of reflection. But does our thankfulness ever include our heritage and the sacrifices of great men who won for us the freedom to express this thanks?
For example, have you ever wondered what happened to the fifty-six men who signed the declaration of Independence? Well, five were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died. Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned. And nine died from wounds inflicted during the war.
Who were these people? Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists, nine were farmers or plantation owners, 11 were merchants, and almost all were men of well means and education.
They had security, but they valued liberty more. They all had a great deal to lose for standing by their principles, and they knew that if they were captured they all risked death. They all pledged, for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of the Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other, our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.
Maybe we should be thankful that they relied on God and realized it was His will that all men live free.