FAMILY FAITH AT HOME 11/5/17

by Lori Robinson

Categories: Children's Ministry

 The week of November 5th – During the month of November, your family is invited to focus on the virtue of gratitude and reflect on how you can appreciate the ways in which others have helped you. Find a time this week to gather as a family, say a prayer, listen to or read a prompt, respond as a family to what you have heard and then act on the suggestion for the week.

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 November Virtue            Gratitude: letting others know you see how they’ve helped you.

 What is a virtue?             A virtue is something that God does in us to change the world around us.

 GATHER                               together in prayer

 LISTEN                                  through scripture; readings; stories; music; videos

 RESPOND                            to what you have heard

 ACT                                         in service to what God is calling you to

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GATHER

Gather together as a family and pray this prayer of thanksgiving:

Thanksgiving Prayer

Our God you have created a wondrous place in which to live.

With childlike eyes we see the beauty and grandeur

of mountain and forest, of river and seashore.

We marvel at the infinite variety of species that form the jigsaw of life

birds and beasts, flowers and trees.

We give thanks for the variety of cultures that weave the tapestry of humanity

east and west, north and south.

We give thanks that in the midst of all this you have a place for us

and we give thanks for the variety of our own lives

things we have done and things we have learnt,

for those we love and those who care for us.

We give thanks for the variety of ways in which people serve us

with advice and learning, with skills and training,

with concern and understanding, with trust and sharing.

We give thanks for all we have received

and that we are also given the opportunity to serve others.

Grant us the vision of who we are and what we can offer others in your name.   Amen.

(Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand) http://www.presbyterian.org.nz/for-ministers/worship-resources/special-services/stewardship/prayers-of-thanksgiving

LISTEN                                                                                                                                                                      

Watch this video which describes the November virtue of gratitude: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqWcvw7DG2M&feature=youtu.be

Have one person in your family read 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.

This Bible passage can be found online at Bible Gateway via this link: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Thessalonians+5%3A16-18&version=NRSV

RESPOND

We all have times when we experience struggles, faces challenges or deal with problems in our lives.  And these concerns can sometimes overwhelm us. So how can we regain balance and perspective, especially if we feel like everything is going wrong?  One tool we can use – both when things are going well and when things are rough in our lives – is to make a “gratitude list.”  We can list everything we can think of to be grateful for.  And then we can thank God for those things.  Even when we feel like nothing is going our way, there is something we can give thanks for.  We may need help recognizing what there is to be grateful for, but there is always something.

ACT

Let’s practice making a gratitude list! Have each member of your family write down EVERYTHING they can think of that they are grateful for.  Then share your lists with one another and see if you can come up with anything else that could be added to your lists.  Finally, say a short prayer thanking God for everything on your lists.  If you need help with the prayer, say something like this:

Dear God – Thank you for all the things we’ve thought of to be grateful for. Help us to remember these things, especially when we’re having a hard time feeling grateful. Thank you, God, for all the ways you are with us both in good times and in hard times.  Amen.

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Food for Thought – Quotes about gratitude

No duty is more urgent than that of returning thanks.  James Allen

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.  William Ward

We are powerless to redesign the world, but we have infinite power to create our appreciation of it.  Jonathan Lockwood Huie