Actually, I suppose most of the honor of this title should go to Charles Schultz rather than to Charlie Brown. We watched the Charlie Brown version of the Pilgrim story this evening. Somehow, I had never seen it before. It was a good reminder of the story of the first Thanksgiving.
This little cartoon reminded me that the Pilgrims did not undertake the consideration of uprooting their families lightly. After all they had just done that very thing some 10 years before when they left England for Holland. And now they were considering doing it again. And what was it they looked forward to when they considered moving across the Atlantic Ocean? They faced “…invoncevable perils and dangers.” (Of Plymouth Plantation, Book I, IV).
There was the expense and the danger of crossing the seas, the length of the voyage, exposure to the elements upon arriving in America, famine, nakedness, want, sickness, disease, danger from unknown peoples, and “other cruelties too horrible to be related.” (Book I, IV).
Yet, they made the decision to come anyway.
“It was replied that all great and honourable actions are accompanied with great difficulties, and must be both met and overcome with answerable courage. It was granted the dangers were great, but not desperate; the difficulties were many, but not invincible. For, many of the things feared might never befall; others by provident care and the use of good means might in a great measure be prevented; and all of them, through the help of God, by fortitude and patience, might either be borne or overcome. True it was that such attempts were not to be undertaken without good ground and reason, rashly or lightly; or, as many had done, for curiosity or hope of gain. But their condition was not ordinary; their ends were good and honourable; their calling, lawful and urgent; therefore they might expect the blessing of God on their proceedings. Yea, though they should lose their lives in this action, yet might they have the comfort of knowing that their endeavour was worthy.” (Book I, IV
So tonight I would like to thank Charles Schultz and William Bradford for reminding me to persevere and to look ahead to future generations when life feels uncertain. Thanks Charlie Brown for helping me to remember the lessons of my forefathers and not to forget the first Thanksgiving.