Perspective Matters on Thanksgiving

The last 18-months have been hard for many people. The reasons are obvious. A pandemic, a shutdown, a contentious election, and social unrest have dominated the headlines and exposed fault lines in culture.

But take a step back and cast a wider vision. We are blessed to be alive. America is the most prosperous nation on earth at the most prosperous time in human history. At the disposal of today’s ‘common man’ is an endless array of technological advances that make our lives better than anything the John D. Rockfellers of the world could have imagined a century ago.

Poverty, pestilence, and short lifespans were once the norm of the human experience. Now it is the exception. We are better educated, we live in nicer houses, drive nicer cars, eat better food, have more experiences, and live longer lives.

The principles and ideals that created this environment of prosperity and progress are worth appreciating and preserving. The American experiment with individual liberty worked. That doesn’t mean we should rest on our laurels or stop tackling injustice. Just that we should appreciate how far we’ve come while we continue the climb. Perspective matters.

On a personal level, I am thankful for a God that saves, for a healthy family that provides love and support, and for the ability to call Mississippi home. Mississippians still understand the value of faith, community, and hard work.

We are a creative, talented, and giving lot of people. I’m sure you have your own list of things you’re thankful for this year, whether overcoming challenges, strengthening relationships that matter, or a breakthrough achievement.

On an organizational level, we are so thankful at Empower for people like you; people who care deeply about the future of our state. Without you, the mission of this organization—to ensure that every child has access to quality education, every adult access to meaningful work, and that there is truly justice for all—can not be accomplished.

We are thankful for the difference that has been made in the life of Mississippians because Mississippians rose up to make that difference. This week, as you gather with family and friends, gorge on turkey, ham, and sweet potato casserole, watch football, go shopping, decorate for Christmas, or whatever you like to do, I am also thankful for those who shared their stories with us this the past year.