As a family with young kids, we constantly strive to instill thankfulness, throughout the year but specifically around Thanksgiving.
The good news for you, and my family, is that I married a brilliant lady, a teacher by trade and fun person by lifestyle. Years ago she found the book, “Thanksgiving, A Time to Remember”, and set up a lesson plan around it. Each night of Thanksgiving week, we read a section, followed by acting it out. The lesson finishes on Thanksgiving, with a final reading and an activity centered on thankfulness, or gratitude.
This great book teaches about the history of the settlers, their faith, and their rocky start with the native people. It is even arranged for different age groups, so you can read/teach older kids or younger or both. The book ends with a Thanksgiving feast, food of all kinds and types; breads, vegetables, meat and desserts!
The gratitude activity is actually based on remembering the year before; the faith to succeed and the scarcity of resources.
Food was so scarce the year before, that in order to make it through the cold winter, settlers were each rationed a few kernels of corn daily. Daily. In remembrance of that tough winter, each of the settlers takes 5 kernels of corn and shares what they are grateful for.
We mimic this activity in our family.
Wherever we are and whoever we are with, we each get five kernels and a fancy sheet of paper. Everyone then writes down and shares five things that they are thankful for. We share our gratitude for what God had done for us and our love for each other. There is also the random mention of Star Wars or Pokémon, but Jesus is well represented. A cup is passed around; as you share your items, you put in your kernels one at a time.
In a time of celebration, our family is reminded that the pies, the food, the football and the naps are not the most important part of this holiday. Rather, these things are an intentional celebration of those things we are thankful for throughout the year.
Your family may have its own traditions that focus on gratitude and thankfulness. Or maybe you don’t and it’s time to start one. Either way, make time to be intentional with your family, and create opportunities to share what is important, what this season is about. This is a great lesson to start the holiday season. They may blow you off at the beginning, but they will see the benefits. May you and yours be gratefully blessed this Thanksgiving season!
Paul (aka Mr. Brouse to kids at MCC) is MCC's Children's Ministry leader, husband to Mindy Brouse and the father of 7.
On Sundays, we have three options for Worship & Praise! Please join us:
- Outdoors at 8:30 & Indoors 10:30am
- Via live-stream at 10:30am on Facebook
Please read the Guidelines for Gathering to Worship Together at MCC in its entirety so that you know what to expect when you come to our outdoor service. This will help you and those around you navigate a very new situation, hopefully in a way that is as seamless as possible. We believe that our unity will be expressed and strengthened as we serve one another in Christ this week so join us in extending grace to each other, amid our differing perspectives, and different views about how to live in this time.
“... submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.”
“Outdo one another in showing honor.”
“By this all men will know that you are My disciples,
if you have love for one another.”
Please know that we are making every effort for this gathering to be in full compliance with the protocols given by authorities. No single plan for our meeting will ever be the perfect solution in any one person’s eyes. We will all be making compromises. But as we defer to these guidelines set up by our elders and leadership, we will be serving our fellow believers, honoring Christ as best we can, and providing for a beautiful expression of worship to happen together.
Please stay home if any of the following apply to you:
- You are immunocompromised.
- You are feeling ill (running a fever, coughing, or showing other signs of sickness)
Please don’t put yourself or others at risk. Thank you for staying home and staying safe, because we love you!