It’s the one thing I long for my family to learn, live:
It’s the one thing I teach by example (or lack 0f), a heart full of thanksgiving, overflowing on my husband, surrounding my children. They are watching, waiting. Not just for the outward, polite, mandatory “thank you.” But the grateful heart that spills out and is contagious.
It’s not just the gratefulness for new things, a comforter on sale for my daughter’s bed brings praise, “thank you, Mom!” It’s thankfulness in the trials, the hard times, the difficult spots we find ourselves. These are the moments that define us: digging deep when gratitude isn’t easy.
Thankfulness isn’t inherited. It often doesn’t come easy. It needs to be practiced, made a priority.
We are counting to a thousand in our house, one thousand thanks to Him.
Each night after our dinner routine, we pull out pen and our Family Gratitude Journal. It’s lovely and leads us into deep, fun conversations.
This past week, we talked about Sara and her choice to choose joy in all circumstances. She has been in our prayers, this far-away, (in)courage writer-friend of mine, who passed away after her fight with a debilitating illness. She left a legacy of thankfulness, which is really about finding the joy in every situation.
My kids asked a couple of hard questions. The kind I don’t have answers for. But we look for the good even when it feels bad.
My kids bring a pen to the table, offer their answers to questions like, “What’s your favorite thing about our house?” and “What makes you laugh?” and then we take turns around the table giving thanks. “Today, I’m thankful for…”
Sometimes the answer is silly (my 4 year old answered “Facebook” the other night to a hysterical family. What??) and sometimes they take my breath away. Like last night when my oldest said she was thankful, truly grateful for something I’d done for her. It hadn’t gone unnoticed and her thankful heart made me smile.
How to Stir Up Thanksgiving in Your Family:
- Record your gratitude
- Read past entries aloud
- Reflect on the day, the good and bad
- Reinforce-nothing is too small
- Resolve to give thanks, in all things
1000 GIFTS GRATITUDE JOURNAL
Thank you Lord for… hands of friendship, God our Father, and the Way into Joy. With 1,000 numbered spaces, this robin egg blue journal with a closing strap provides a special way for your family to keep track of God’s gifts to you. The pages are filled with Scriptures, inspirational photos, and conversation starters so you can continue to keep track of the memories your family makes together. Measures 8 3⁄8″×1 3⁄8″×8″ Pockets are built in to many pages for keeping precious notes, photos, and other keepsakes.
If you’d like to win, please tell me something you’re thankful for in the comments.
(You can also purchase one for $24.)
So, choose it: joy. And by doing so, you’ll be teaching your family the greatest gift of all-gratitude.