It’s that time of year again … time for our 21 Days of Thanksgiving Series. This is my 7th year to offer the series to you. I’m super-excited about the terrific bloggers that are helping us support the Thanksgiving Series and our brand, new 30 Day Gratitude Challenge and offering their expertise on gratitude right here on the blog.
Why a 30 Day Gratitude Challenge?
From a Biblical perspective, we know we should have a spirit of thankfulness. It is God’s will for us to show gratitude and teach our kid to be thankful.
In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God.2 Corinthians 5:17
When I focus on giving thanks, my attitude moves from myself to God. The same thing was true for my kids when I encouraged them to show gratitude for the things God gives us and the way He works in our lives.
Did you know there are many other benefits for being thankful? Take a look at just a few from research on gratitude.
- Increased optimism
- More & better quality of sleep
- Improved relationships
- Sense of connectedness
- Positive emotions
- Increased sense of well-being
- Cope better with stress and major adversities
Don’t believe this lie . . .
You’re either born as a thankful person or you’re not.
Hogwash … I don’t want to bore with you with a bunch of research, but our brains can be trained to think differently. When my life fell apart four years ago, I didn’t want to fall into constant negativity. So, I focused on the positive and continued writing at least 3 things a day in my gratitude journal.
Some days I had to think very hard for things to be thankful for. Taking the time to think & pray … changed my perspective. Changed the way I think.As of right now, my gratitude journal is on #6083.
Just last week, I was driving home and hit a green light at every signal light. That’s a miracle in itself. After two or three green lights, I thanked God for each green light. My brain had changed to pay attention to good things, even small things.
How Can You Use Gratitude with Your Children?
OK…you don’t need to give them a bunch of research. I would start with reading the Bible together. Ask them questions so they come up with their own conclusion that God wants them to give thanks.
As a family, memorize the verse of thanks that you discuss. Recite it each morning at breakfast.
Finally, let your kids take the 30 day gratitude challenge. Why 30 days? Many say it takes 30 days to form a new habit. So, let’s give thanks for 30 days and begin the habit of thankfulness in your family.
To help you out, I’ve created a simple 30 Day Gratitude Challenge Printable. Each person in your family should have their own printable. At dinner time or bedtime, let your kids write what they are thankful for that day. There is enough space on the printable to let your kids write what they are thankful for that day.
Younger kids might use the printable with prompts for each day. Even preschoolers can take on the challenge with the thank you prompts on the printable.
For, older kids and parents, I suggest writing at least 3 things you are thankful for each day. Once you sign up, you’ll receive an email with specific ideas for older kids.
Be sure to check back here (or sign up for our email updates in the upper right sidebar) throughout November for lots of great ideas to help you teach gratitude to your kids. For now, take the 30 Day Gratitude Challenge and get your free printables below.