O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endures forever. 1 CHRONICLES 16:34
IN EVERYTHING GIVE THANKS
Next week we will be celebrating the Thanksgiving Holiday and it is also a good time to take a few moments to "Count Our Blessings!" One little boy had an idea to make a "gratitude tree" for their families thanksgiving holiday.
COME AS A CHILD
On November 1st, he cut out a tree trunk and limbs from brown poster board, then he taped it to the wall in their dining room. He and his sister began to cut maple-shaped leaves made from colorful construction paper.
The idea was that each night, just before dinner the family would share what they were thankful for on the homemade leaves and then tape it to the tree limbs. However, that first night mom was a bit anxious because she had to make dinner, take her daughter to her gymnastic's class and her son to Boy Scouts.
A NIGHT OF TRUE GRATITUDE
The night was full and she had what seemed like a hundred and one things to do. Still, the little boy called the family to the dining room and proudly stated, "I'll go first, I'm thankful for my family, for homemade soup. For my bicycle and for my friends!"
He then took a pen and wrote on his thanksgiving leaf with an ink pen. It was time to go around the table so that each member of the family could say what they were thankful for, pick a leaf and write it down and then tape it to the tree their son had made.
TAKING TIME FOR THANKS
It was taking quite a bit more time than anticipated and mom was getting a little anxious. But as she listened, her heart and her mood began to change as she heard her children giving their thanks and happily writing it down on a leaf of their choice.
As she listened she forgot about the evening events and the commitments she was so concerned about. She decided it was more important to really listen to her children and forget about her busy lifestyle.
Children have a way of blessing us in such simple ways. When mom took the time to absolutely listen, she realized the power of being thankful and the joy of hearing her children realize they also had much to be thankful for.
By thanksgiving day the tree was full of colorful, thankful leaves. There was thanks for a kind neighbor man who lived next door, thanks for their pets who were always ready to share their love.
A THANKFUL TRADITION
Thanks for warm blankets during the cold nights, and thanks for all sorts of things that no one in the family had even thought about before. And, it turned out that this became their family tradition each and every thanksgiving after that first one.
I think it's a beautiful idea and it made this particular families thankfulness flow freely from their hearts. I think it may have also surprised them at how many little things they had overlooked on previous thanksgiving days!
COME AS A CHILD
When we open our hearts to thankfulness, children are probably the heart of being thankful! Jesus welcomed the little children to come to him and the Lord tells us that we adults also need to come to him a s a child.
But, Jesus said, "Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.
The children were brought to Jesus in the parents hope that he would bless them, lay hands on them and pray over them. The disciples tried to shew them off, but Jesus welcomed them wholeheartedly!
ENTERING THE KINGDOM OF GOD
Why? To enter God's Kingdom we all need to come to Him as a little child, with our spirit open and humble. Hearts that will see and trust our Savior.
Lord Jesus, help us to come to you with the eyes and hearts of a child.