Can you believe it’s already January?
At the start of the new year, I looked back through my 2014 praise journal to see all the wonderful things that God had done – big and small. Here are a few of them:
- The doctor’s office is paying us, instead of us paying them (overpayment)
- Have kids’ passports!
- We were all well to go to church!!
- Grayma is in heaven & pain free
- Many unsaved heard Gospel at 3 on 3 Tournament
- Unsaved neighbor girls came to VBS
As I read over them, rejoicing over what a great year it had been, I realized I had written all these down in my own journal for me to see throughout the year and later, but what about my kids? Were my kids regularly seeing and being reminded of God’s wonderful blessings and answers to our prayers?
As part of our family devotions, we have everyone give a praise and a prayer request, but there is just something about looking back at His blessings!
At a recent conference I attended, a missionary wife mentioned that she wished that while she was on deputation, she had kept a Blessings Journal so that she would have had it to refer to when the difficult times came. What a great idea!
That reminds me of a note I read in my Life Application Study Bible:
“No matter how difficult your life’s journey, you can always count your blessings—past, present, and future.”
When going through some tough times, how encouraging it would be to pull out that Blessings Journal and see how God has led us throughout the year.
Psalm 103:2 reminds us not to forget the blessings of God:
“Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits.”
Psalm 105:5 is the verse that I have at the beginning of my praise journal:
“Remember his marvelous works that he hath done.”
So, how can we help our children to be aware of and remember what He has done for us? Here are a few ideas:
- The Blessings Journal is easier for those more on the go, such as those missionaries on deputation or furlough. Grab a decorative journal, or if you prefer, get a plain journal and have your children decorate it with buttons, ribbon, markers, etc. Anytime you think of something, you or your children can write or draw a picture of something to thank God for. Be sure to add the date too!
- The Gratitude Jar can become a part of your decor. Decorate a quart size mason jar or another large jar. Have slips of paper and a pen in a nearby basket for adding the written or drawn blessings.
- The Thankful Paper Chain is a great idea for those with younger children. Remember making paper chains as a kid? Keep slips of paper handy to write or draw what you are thankful for. You can then make a paper chain as you use the slips, or you can save them up and assemble later at Thanksgiving or the end of the year. How long will your Thankful Paper Chain get by the end of the year? Will it go all the way around the room? Around the house?
Check out our printable downloads in the “Take Action” section below to make your own Gratitude Jar papers or Thankful Paper Chain links.
Whichever way you choose to help your children remember what God has done, be sure to have it out where you will remember to use it or maybe set aside a certain time to use it. A few years ago, we started writing answers to prayers in a notebook, but it was put on a shelf and forgotten (blush). l hope this year will be different!
Have you tried one of these methods?
I’d love to hear what you do to keep God’s blessings before your children. Leave a comment to share your ideas.
If you’re interested in finding more ideas for Christian growth for your family, follow Edify Hub’s boards on Pinterest:
Download and print one of these templates to fill up your own Gratitude Jar or Thankful Paper Chain: