I am praying that you are excited about a wonderful holiday season. I love Thanksgiving so. I think anytime I have the opportunity to be with family and friends I am so blessed. I love it more than anything. I have the privilege of traveling some as a part of the ministry and the older my kids get, the more I long for time just with them. Time at home. Not this year…the travel didn’t happen and we had more time at home than we asked for… but can we still be thankful? This season will pass, but we will allow the lessons we learned to reshape us…to make new patterns and create thankfulness in hearts for the simple things? This Monday morning as I type, if you asked me what I am most thankful for, my top three would be: intimacy with the Father, my family, and time with those I love.
I have been thinking about Thanksgiving and preparing our home for the coming gatherings. Yesterday we did some Christmas decorating (I know, early…I just want lots of time to enjoy it!:)) But all day long, I kept saying to Brian, “I am just so emotional.” Felt all day long that I might just burst into tears. Not out of sadness, but with a deep, sincere feeling of thankfulness. God is so precious. I love that I can look at my life and the lives of my family and friends and see that He is Mighty in every way…and precious all at the same time. There are no words to describe Him. Thankful.
How do we transfer that to our children? Certainly, our children are blessed. Now I also know that their lives are not perfect, no matter how badly we wish it were. The truth of the matter is their lives will never be perfect. There will always be difficult people, difficult situations, and sadness. If we are waiting on a moment of perfection to be thankful we will never arrive. We must be a thankful people in all situations and we must lead our children into gratitude as well.
- Recognize blessings in our lives. Even little things like a beautiful sunrise, a good parking place at the mall, the smell of a pie cooking and a good grade on a test are all things we can be thankful for.
- Teach them to verbalize their gratitude. Saying thank you isn’t just good southern manners, it is life-giving to our hearts.
- Allow them the opportunity to “want” for something. If we never give them the opportunity to be in need, they will never appreciate a need being met.
- Pray for blessings for others. Ask the Lord to bless someone else. The world does not revolve around us.
“Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations.” Psalm 100:4-5
Our deepest desire is to enter into His courts. My prayer for us over this Thanksgiving holiday is that we would enter into His presence with Thanksgiving and praise and that our children would follow us there.