As in the image, we often decorate our autumn and Thanksgiving pictures with a horn of plenty also known a cornucopia. Cornucopia comes from the Late Latin cornu copiae, which translates literally as “horn of plenty.” A traditional staple of feasts, the cornucopia is believed to represent the horn of a goat from Greek mythology.
According to legend, it was from this horn, which could be filled with whatever the owner wished, that the god Zeus was fed as an infant by his nurse, the nymph Amalthaea. Later, the horn was filled with flowers and fruits, and given as a present to Zeus. The filled horn (or a receptacle resembling it) has long served as a traditional symbol in art and decoration to suggest a store of abundance. The word first appeared in English in the early 16th century; a century later, it developed the figurative sense of “an overflowing supply.” That is according to Greek mythology.
The symbol of the horn of plenty is also rooted in Scripture. King David exults God for being the horn of his salvation (2 Sam. 22:3). Repeatedly, in the Psalms, David speaks of God causing the righteous man’s horn to be exalted (cf. 89:17; 92:10; 148:14; etc.). In Daniel’s, Micah’s, and Zechariah’s prophesies, the horn appears in visions as symbols of power and strength – all connected to the true source of such power and strength, God.
Whatever the exact origins of the cornucopia, the figure has come to symbolize what the name means: “the horn of plenty.” On this Thanksgiving Day, we are each called to be mindful of the many ways by which God has blessed us with abundance. Today, as every day, we should spend time in prayer thanking Him for all He has given us.
We should be ever mindful that we live out entire lives in Christ as beneficiaries of endless, unsearchable riches and blessings. From the cornucopia of God’s grace and mercy, we enjoy all spiritual blessings (Ephesians 1:3). Perhaps we may never completely be aware of all that God has done for us, but we can always acknowledge Jesus as the cornucopia of grace and mercy in our lives.
Image credit: Image by Freepik