I watched it as a kid. My kids watched it. Now my grandkids are watching it. The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade has been around a very long time! And those Rockettes. The announcer said they've been around for over 50 years! Amazing they can still get their legs off the ground at their age.
As the balloons floated by on Thanksgiving, I kept seeing this one word on the store behind them - "Believe." I guess that's inspiring. Vaguely. Actually, "Believe" is a pretty popular message these days. Think positive thoughts. Have faith. In something.
Our "open-minded" culture thinks it's a good idea to believe. But it doesn't seem to matter much what it is you believe in. Believe in yourself. Believe in the future. Believe in a better world.
Actually, it really does matter what you believe. The Bible throws up a serious "danger" sign when it says, "There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death" (Proverbs 14:12) I read a few years ago about some young men fighting a wildfire out west. The wind suddenly stoked that fire and turned it on the firefighters. Those rookies headed in the direction they firmly believed was the road out. It was a dead-end road. They never made it out. They believed. In the wrong thing.
When it comes to the final outcome for our eternal soul, believing is a life-or-death imperative. "Believe on the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved" (Acts 16:31). God emphatically says, "There is no other Name under heaven...by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). That's "saved" as in rescued. From the forever death penalty of a lifetime of defying God and doing what we want instead of what He wants.
There are all kinds of religions and moral philosophies and spiritualities. If a religion could have done it, God would have never put His Son through the horror of the Cross. No religion - including the Christian religion - can die for our sins and get us to heaven. That's why "there's no other Name" but Jesus. He alone paid the price so I wouldn't have to.
So we've got something - Someone - to believe in Who can make this life have meaning and the life after this one eternal.
That's reason for a thanksgiving parade.