According to a note I read yesterday, of the 11,585 U.S. and international stock mutual funds tracked by Morningstar, all but one had lost money this year. As we head into the Thanksgiving holiday, this fact offers a nice opportunity to be thankful for and reflect upon things other than the size of our bank accounts.
The following website offers a nice recounting of the Pilgrims and the First Thanksgiving. (I am going to read a copy of this story to my family before tomorrow’s meal; perhaps you’d like to as well.) Of the original 110 individuals who left Europe in search of religious freedom in 1621, only 50 survived the difficult journey overseas and their first harsh winter in Plymouth. And yet – in the midst of these seemingly terrible circumstances – these early Americans celebrated their many blessings the following autumn with the first Thanksgiving.
Life’s trials and tribulations may be different today than they were in the 1620’s, but they are still just that – trials and tribulations. Sometimes, the amenities of a modern world lull us into a false sense of security when – in a very real sense – we remain pilgrims drifting in unchartered waters in unfamiliar territory. This Thanksgiving, I am thankful that I can face uncertainty not with fear or anxiety, but with a calming peace and even – dare I say it – excitement about the voyage ahead and what we could become.
It’s actually kind of cool.
From my turkey to yours, enjoy a Thankful Thanksgiving.