"Our fall was, has always been, and always will be, that we aren't satisfied in God and what He gives. We hunger for something more, something other." Ann Voskamp, one thousand gifts
The sin of ingratitude, dissatisfaction and discontent are nothing new. They have been around since the Garden of Eden. Teaching the next generation to be grateful is also not a new idea but it is a practice that I believe to be of the utmost importance. I know that I get whiny, ungrateful and discontent regularly and I need an attitude adjustment in my life before I lose all sense of the blessings I have in my life.
Our society does not encourage gratitude. Entitlement, self-importance and independence yes, but not gratitude. It is my belief that gratitude goes beyond just good manners, although that is important and a great place to start. Gratitude is at the heart level and that is where I truly want to reach my children. My life and the lives of those around me are so much easier when my kids have good behavior and show good manners but that is not my highest goal. I want my girls to understand that to bring glory to God they need to have a deep gratitude in their lives that is much deeper than just their words and behaviors. This is the only gratitude that can weather the storms that life has to throw at them.
In my post yesterday I talked about how we have been spending time over the last month learning how to control our whining. This month we are trying to focus on the heart by practicing gratitude. I made a simple Thanksgiving advent calendar which we will use. Each night at dinner we will each say and then write down at least 1 thing we are thankful for that day. It is a simple practice and doesn't take much time but will hopefully help our family focus on all the blessings God has given us and teach us to be grateful people.
|A simple canvas, chipboard letters and scrapbook paper. I am sure it could be more crafty but it will work just fine as it is. This i placed right above our kitchen counter where we eat.|
It is my desire to see my children grow to honor God through living grateful lives in a society that desperately needs it. So, now it's your turn, how do you encourage gratitude in the children in your life? How could or has the practice of gratitude made an impact in your life?
Today's gratitude: That I have I have children who are enjoying a quiet rest time right now as I write this. Selfish or not, it is definitely something for me to be grateful for today. How about you?