Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A Puritan's Grace

My Wife the Energizer Bunny has graciously consented to feed nineteen people tomorrow. As Lord of the Manor, I'll say something about Thanksgiving as a prelude to grace. This year I wondered what sort of reflections the Puritans would have offered at the first Thanksgiving. I Googled around for a while, but didn't find anything that struck me. So I've decided to confect something that I think a Puritan would appreciate, should any Puritans be among tomorrow's cloud of witnesses:
"Sailing to the the New World in 1620, in a New Ark, the Puritans believed they were establishing a New Israel in a New Canaan. They were a new tribe of Chosen People headed for a new Promised Land. Given how they understood themselves through the Old Testament, I wondered what a Puritan might have said at the first Thanksgiving: something that would be particularly appropriate on that occasion, but would also have meaning in a modern context. And I thought of Psalm 128, which I now paraphrase:
"You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands & all shall be well with you. Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table. May you live to see your children's children in a happy Jerusalem. How blessed are those who walk in the ways of the Lord!"
And then we'll say grace and eat.
* Mayflower by Mike Haywood