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.
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The Military Bible Stick is designed specifically to bring God’s Word to men and women deployed in the U.S. Military. It’s a small digital player pre-loaded with the New Testament and Psalms specifically selected for our troops. If you would like to support this opportunity beyond your regular giving, make a separate check to MCC, with “Military Bible Stick” in the memo. Contact Chris Willadsen for more information.
We have a terrific opportunity to spread God’s love and his Word to the international students attending UNM. MCC has been working with ISI for many years helping international students as they arrive in town for the new academic year.
Volunteers are needed in several capacities:
Picking students up at airport, temporary homestays, or helping with apartment hunting
Help at welcome center
Furniture movers, pickup and distribution
Prepare dish for volunteer/student lunches (sign-up sheets will be in the foyer)
These activities will run July 31-August 17, pick the times that work best for you. There are also opportunities that span the entire school year as well:
Assist with English program
Student friendship partners (meet monthly with student)
Please contact Vince Tidwell or Stan Schug for
more information or to get involved.
The door is open to share the Gospel in our public schools! Come and be a part of Bible Club! The trainings are from 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. either
August 4th at Mountain Valley Church
August 11th at Monterey Baptist in Albuquerque.
Contact Gail Salazar at 980-6890 or email at
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