Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!” Psalm 95:2 ESV
Happy Thanks-vember! My goal is to help you have fun this month as you teach your kids about having a year-round spirit of thankfulness! Before we run into a Christmas season of “I Want!” it is especially important that we take time to focus on thankfulness. When our hearts are full of thanksgiving, it’s hard to grumble and complain. When we focus on what we have instead of the have-nots, it’s hard not to be joyous! And we all want our kids to be filled with joy, right?
Planning a Month of Thanks-vember!
I want to start out Thanks-vember by encouraging you to take a few minutes to plan with your kids. Then you can make sure that the month doesn’t slip by you without remembering those that mean so much. Here’s what to do…
1. First things first–say a prayer. God can use these simple activities to bless others who need it. Take a minute to not only pray about who you want to bless and how you want to bless them, but actually sit for a few minutes in silence and let God work on your hearts as He leads you to who might need to be blessed in this season.
Let me hear what God the Lord will speak,
for he will speak peace to his people.” Psalm 85:8
2. Make a list of people that your children are thankful for. They can range from close family members to service workers. If your children are having trouble being thankful for a particular person you feel they should be thankful for (Can you say, “Sibling rivalry!”), you may want to dictate one of the people your children are going to celebrate.
Determine how many people your family should celebrate during the month. If you are extra ambitious, you could even focus on one person per day. (God bless you! That’s a lot of work!) Just get your ideas down so you can budget for time and materials in advance.
3. Choose something special to do for each of the people on your list. You may want to do the same thing for each person, or you might want to individualize it according to what you think that person will enjoy. Again, prayer can be your best friend in determine what will be the biggest blessing. Some suggestions might include…
- Making a card for them and writing a note of appreciation in it.
- Making or buying them a small gift. (You might choose to do this now, but save it for Christmas. Your Christmas to-do list will shrink faster this way!)
- Having them over for a special thank-you meal or delivering goodies to them.
- Think of something that will help them out…washing their car windows, raking leaves, doing an errand for them.
4. Get out your calendar and write down when it would actually be feasible to live out your plan. This isn’t meant to be an added stress to the holiday season, but something to put meaning behind the hype. If you plan right, you can minimize the potential stress that doing extra things might bring.
5. Just do it! Each day (or week) that you focus on a particular person, or group of people, take a little extra time to pray for them. After all, God is able to do much more for the people we love than we are!
I would love to hear how your Thankfulness Plan blesses others and what you chose to do. Let us know below!
*You can also find this post on Monday’s Musings.