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November 21, 2012

Posted Friday, November 23, 2012, at 10:04 AM

No matter what your religious faith, you've probably heard the hymn NOW THANK WE ALL OUR GOD. "Now Thank We All Our God, With Hearts and Hands and Voices..." One could imagine the composer of that hymn experiencing a boom in life and blessings being showered upon him from every source. But that is not the case.

The composer of that hymn is Martin Rinkart, a 17th century German clergyman. In 1637 the plague hit his small town, killing over 8,000 people. Rinkart worked at the beds of the sick and dying and buried more than 4,000 people himself. The plague was followed by a famine, and the clergyman had trouble finding bread and clothes for his own children. It was in this context that he wrote his famous hymn of trust, praise and thanksgiving. How is that possible? Because even in the midst of such calamity, Rinkart found things for which to be grateful. Scripture tells us "in all things give thanks"

You may not be doing well in your life right now. Maybe you're sick or struggling financially. Perhaps you have family troubles or marital woes. Most are dealing with something. What Thanksgiving reminds us to do is to appreciate that all of life is a gift. Graciously given to us: time, the earth, our loved ones, and, yes, even the struggles. Remembering that all on the face of the earth are special because, we all share the same creator.

"Who from our mothers' arms has blessed us on our way. With countless gifts of love, and still is ours today."

HAPPY THANKSGIVING! May you give thanks and enjoy the priceless moments you spend with friends and family.

Congratulations to the Caruthersville Tigers' Football team on a very successful season. They made it all the way to the semi-finals before coming up short. What a great year! Congratulations once again.

As always, it is an honor to serve you in the Missouri House. If you would like to discuss any issue, please call 573-751-3629. You can also email me at Kent.Hampton@house.mo.gov. I look forward to hearing from you.

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