Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:4-7

22 December 2011

Saying thanks

Blogosphere has a lot to say about Christmas (this blog included!) - but there is one little idea that I have seen only in one spot.  A simple idea, easy to do, perfect in every way.  I noticed it after Christmas last year - a photo and one sentence tucked away in a larger post.  Here.  Amanda's family spend a little bit of time thanking God for all the good things He gives them before they open their presents. 

Given a bit of warning, everyone has time to think of something they're thankful to God for - and what a great moment for an adult to give thanks to God for sending His Son to earth a baby, to die a man on a cross and be raised to eternal life that we too might have eternal life with Him.  And if done annually, what a rich thing to see how these prayers of thanksgiving develop.

Thanks Amanda.  This is a gift.

4 comments:

Libby said...

Hi Meredith - Merry Christmas. We are looking forward to being back in Perth next year.
What a great idea from Amanda - I think we will do this starting this year.
Libby

Meredith said...

Hello there! Welcome back. And Merry Christmas to you too.

And yes, I love Amanda's idea. But you probably guessed that. Can't wait to give it a go, and make it an on-going tradition. I think it will fall under the category of trying to embed the gospel into our traditions. If, every year, we associate sitting around the Christmas tree and opening presents with saying a hearty thanks to God, then hopefully our children will remember this as adults as they sit around their own trees. Whether or not they are walking with the Lord (and we trust they will be) this will be a small reminder of the gospel to them each year.

Petrina said...

Last year we started a sort-of-similar tradition: as we put up the Christmas tree, we each write one thing that we're thankful for on a slip of coloured paper and link them together in a chain, which then goes on the tree. It's still short at the moment, but we're looking forward to seeing it grow as the years pass.

I'd been thinking about getting the extended family to add to it at Christmas lunch too (our main celebration is still to come this year). Immediately before present opening would be a great time to do it. Thanks :)

Meredith said...

Hello Petrina. Thanks for dropping by and for leaving a comment. What a lovely idea. It will be great to read over it as the years pass by.

And I am sure that you have an especially big link of thanksgiving this year. I have been following your news as Simone has linked to it in her blog and been praying for you - and more recently praising God for your great news. Wonderful.

Merry Christmas.