As the calendar turns another page, it’s hard to believe how quickly this school year is flying by, and that the Thanksgiving holiday is just around the corner. While the media will promote turkey, football, and Black Friday shopping, my hope is that our students, and their families, will take time to think about why we are all blessed by God, and celebrate that we have the true reason, Jesus, to be thankful. Below you will find some ideas on how to express thankfulness in these weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, and all year long.
1. Join our Hashtag #Thankful project!
- Download a blank sign with instructions from our website to join in on the fun: www.bit.ly/thx2015.
- Our students will have opportunities during school to participate, and also help share the fun with family and friends.
- Don’t forget to post your photos on social media and include “@Midland Christian School” and #Thankful to showcase to all your friends how thankful the Midland Christian School community is!
2. Begin ̶ or spice up ̶ saying grace at meals.
- Just as Jesus gave thanks when he broke the bread during Passover, saying grace before each meal is a great way of thanking God for his provision to us.
- Be consistent; it takes repetition to make a habit.
- If saying grace is new to your family, consider the many simple graces that are available online (for example, dailyprayer.us/before_meals_prayer.php).
- If you already say grace as a family, find new ways to spice this up so it is a fresh expression of thankfulness (such as each family member to say grace once per week)
3. Plan to talk about things that you are thankful for at your Thanksgiving Dinner.
- It’s important to prepare in advance; tell your children and family members a few days before the Thanksgiving holiday meal that you would like each person to share something they are thankful for.
- Pick a time to do this at the Thanksgiving meal. For example: when the potatoes are being passed around the table, or immediately after saying grace.
- Consider writing what you are thankful for down as a family, and then next year review the list to remember how God continues to bless us.
- Share your thankfulness using the #Thankful sign!
4. Share thankfulness with others by writing thank you notes.
- Thank you notes are an easy way to express your thankfulness to others.
- If you visit family, consider writing one in advance to present to them at the Thanksgiving meal.
- If you need help to develop an easy three-sentence format, consider listening to this podcast: www.manager-tools.com/2007/03/how-write-thank-you-note
- Encourage your children to write thank you notes for their Christmas gifts, and make it a goal to mail them by New Year’s Day.
5. Bedtimes are the perfect time to be thankful.
- At bedtime, between now and Christmas, encourage your child to name three good things that happened during that day.
- Consider writing these down in a journal to record your daily blessings.
- Each month, take time to review the journal, remembering God’s blessing in our lives and trusting that he will continue to bless us.
6. At a store or in a restaurant, use the waiter, waitress, or clerk’s names when you say “Thank you.”
- This simple act can express your personal thankfulness and show your respect.
- Make it a habit to look at their name tag to learn their name.
- Remember that how we treat others is a reflection on our Christian character, and an important part of our expression of God’s love to others.
7. Get involved in a service project to help others.
- A service or volunteer project is a great way to help children develop a proper attitude toward serving others, as well as spending quality time as a family.
- This season is filled with opportunities to help others in simple ways: raking leaves, baking treats for neighbors, offering to babysit for free, collecting canned goods for a food bank, signing up to ring Salvation Army bells, volunteering at a soup kitchen, and so forth.
I hope that you will find these tips helpful to focus your family on being thankful. I wish each of our MCS families a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.
Midland Christian School