The last couple of years have been pretty rough for most of us. It’s fair to say we’re all emotionally and physically tired. But there are still so many things to be thankful for this holiday season!
I want to share with you a Thanksgiving family activity we did with our boys when they were little.
We have only done this one year, but I think 2021 is a good year to do it again.
A Thanksgiving Family Tradition
I cut up a whole bunch of leaves out of colorful construction paper in fall colors. Then every night starting on the first of November I gave everyone in the family a leaf when we were all sitting down for dinner.
During dinner we talked about what we were thankful for that day.
We all wrote down one thing we were specifically thankful for on the paper leaf, and I taped each leaf on the dining room windows every evening.
We did that almost every night until Thanksgiving Day.
Those colorful construction paper leaves, served as a cute fall decoration but most important, as little reminders of all the little and big blessings in our lives.
From The Mouth Of Babes: 43 Things To Be Thankful For
I thought it would be fun to share exactly what the little boys wrote down, misspellings and all. In parenthesis you will either see my reaction or the correct spelling…..just in case you don’t quite understand what they meant LOL.
- A bed
- shamboo (shampoo)
- mony (money)
- tolits (toilets)
- grandmas (💕)
- USA ARMY (🇺🇸)
- gravity (🤣)
- cout (coat)
- hollidays (the holidays)
- moon and stars
- freedom (I’m impressed that a little boy knew freedom was something to be thankful for 💙)
- our bones
- our blood
- freash air
- our body
- turky (turkey dinner)
- I know Jesus (my heart ❤️)
- the Bible
- Jesus’s sacrifice (Amen!)
- our food
- our house
- my family
- frends (friends)
How much better would the world be if we all stayed as innocent as children! They are sincere and uncomplicated in their thinking.
This list is so simple! Yet how many of us forget when we’re in the daily trenches of life, to be thankful for even the smallest things like a warm bed to go to sleep at night?
What Does The Word Of God Say About Thankfulness?
Should we ONLY be thankful when we’re healthy, all our bills are paid, and there’s plenty of food in the refrigerator?
Or should we have a spirit of thankfulness in ALL situations?
Perhaps you have lost your job recently, or you may have lost your health, or a loved one. Such circumstances can be tremendously difficult. But even so, we all have much to be thankful for.Billy Graham
Philippians 4:6-7 says:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Did you catch that? In EVERYTHING by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving.
God is sovereign over all things. Even or especially during times of uncertainty! And just like He was with Job in his time of trouble, He is with you too.
If you are a Christ follower practice giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. As we are instructed to do in Ephesians 5:20
James 3:1-5 says this:
Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.
6 Ways Cultivate A Thankful Spirit
Harvard medical school has done research on the effects gratitude has on people, and the findings say giving thanks can actually make you happier!
So let’s look at a few practical ways you can practice giving thanks every day of the year….
Start and end each day with prayer.
Corrie Ten Boom the holocaust survival said: “Prayer is the key for the day and the lock for the night.”
Think like a child again and thank God for everything! Big and small, every day.
2. KEEP A GRATITUDE JOURNAL
Write it down. One of my favorite things is looking through my bible and reading all the prayers I’ve written down in it, and all the ways God has answered me and showed up in my life.
Maybe when you pray or meditate on God’s word, write just one thing you’re thankful for, or one worry, and give it to God.
3. WRITE A THANK YOU NOTE
When was the last time you wrote a handwritten thank you note to someone? Try it! it won’t only help you in your daily thankfulness journey, but I am sure it will make the recipients day to receive it.
If handwritten notes is not your style, send a text or better yet call someone just to say thank you!
This is something I need to get my whole family more involved in. When we see the needs of others we realize how much we take for granted, how blessed we truly are.
5. BE HUMBLE
Humility isn’t thinking less of yourself; it’s thinking of yourself less .
Instead of focusing so much on our own struggles and difficulties in life, let’s think a little bit less of our selves and see how we can be of help or encouragement to someone else.
6. BE CONTENT
Contentment leads to gratitude for the life we have been blessed with. In a society that is always trying to “keep up with the Joneses” let’s step out of the rat race and be thankful for the things that truly matter in life.
Faith, family, health, freedom….
In a heart filled with gratitude, there is no room for discontentment.Rachel Cruze
What Are You Thankful For This Holiday Season? This Year?
Through the ups and downs, through the darkest and happiest of days, may we never stop giving thanks.
May God bless each and everyone of you this holiday season.