Saturday, November 25, 2017
...Perhaps most noteworthy is the clear religious tone of the Thanksgiving proclamations. [President Abraham] Lincoln did not call for vague, general gratitude of the sort we find in modern Hallmark cards. Rather, he called [in 1863] for “thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens,” and even more strongly in 1864, “thanksgiving and praise to Almighty God, the beneficent Creator and Ruler of the Universe.” Lincoln couldn’t have been clearer in his belief that thanksgiving must have an object, and that the proper object—the Giver to whom thanks is due—is Almighty God.
(from How the Civil War Gave Us Today's Thanksgiving and What it Can Teach Us, by Jayme Metzger in The Federalist)