"Thus we knelt, uncle Ben, his wife, and I, poor slaves in the chains of bondage, really and earnestly thanking God for the many blessings we received. Strange, was it not? when men and women rolling in wealth and all the luxuries and happiness that wealth could purchase, did not even deign to notice the source from whence all their blessings flowed. They had life and liberty, and were unrestrained in the pursuit of happiness, yet not once did they thank the great Giver of all their good. Then what had we, poor wretches, to thank God for? For everything we enjoyed,--for life, for the blessed plan of salvation, for our senses of seeing, hearing, and feeling, for our hearts with which to love him, for our humanity, for the great gifts of sunshine, rain, regulated seasons, the moon, the stars, the earth, the trees, the brooks, the rivers,--everything truly enjoyable we thanked God for. We thanked him for health and strength to do his work. Then we had a great deal to thank Almighty God for, although slaves. How many of you ever think to thank God for sunshine or for reason? Let me illustrate.
A gentleman was passing along the highway, when he was met by a poor maniac, who accosted him, saying, "What do you thank God for?" The gentleman being surprised by the abrupt question did not reply immediately, when the maniac continued, "Then thank God for your reason; mine is gone; I'm mad--a maniac." This was something the gentleman had never thought of before, and it opened to his mind an entirely new source of thankfulness. We are apt to forget that we are not slaves, not blind, deaf, or dumb, and not insane; yet should we lose any one of our five senses we would then know how to be thankful for and appreciate that sense should we regain it. Then thank God for everything, your very existence included. Suppose the sun would stop in his course and not shine on the earth but for one day. What consternation and grief there would be throughout the world! Then suppose that after twenty-four hours the sun should burst upon us in all his refulgence and glorious magnificence. What a shout of joy would greet his appearance, and glad hearts would pour out thanks upon thanks to the great Giver for the needful sunshine. Then let us be thankful for all the great blessings bestowed upon us by our heavenly Father, and serve him with all our hearts, in whatever position in life we may be placed. Uncle Ben and I did [i]then[/i], and we do [i]yet[/i]."
[url=http://docsouth.unc.edu/neh/thompsch/thompsch.html]Rev. Charles Thompson[/url]
Dear Paula ... Thank you for this, the whole of it