Thanks Living


Sharing God's blessings with others


Thank you cards - one per child; pencils


Matthew 25:31-46

When someone does something nice for you, what do you do? You say, "Thank you," don't you? Sometimes that just doesn't seem to be enough. Has someone ever done something for you that was so nice that you wanted to do more than just say, "Thank You"? I have. When that happens, I sometimes send them a "Thank You" card. (Give each child a card and pencil.) Everyone enjoys receiving a "Thank You" card. Think about a time you sent a card or note like this. (Invite a few kids to share about a time they thanked someone with a card.)

Another way you can show your thanks when someone does something really nice for you is by doing something nice for them in return. Like if someone invites you to spend the night and you have a really good time, you return their kindness by inviting them to come and spend the night with you. It’s always important to show we’re thankful when someone does something for us.

I don't know anyone who has done more for us than God has. God provides food when we’re hungry and water when we’re thirsty. He heals us when we’re sick and He comforts us when we’re sad. The Bible tells us that He is an ever-present helper in times of trouble. Take a moment now to write or draw something you’re thankful to God for. (Allow time for kids to write thankful messages to God in their cards. Invite kids to briefly share with a neighbor what they wrote.)

Because of all God has done for us, we say, "Thank you." But He’s done so much! I have an idea to do even more to thank God. 

Jesus told us how to do it. Jesus said, "Whatever you do for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you do it for me." That means when we feed someone who is hungry, it is the same as doing it for Jesus. When we visit someone who is sick, it is the same as doing it for Jesus. When we give clothes to those who are in need, it is the same as doing it for Jesus.

There is a very special name for this way of saying, "Thank you." I call it "thanks living." "Thanks living" is when we show our thanks by the way we live. "Thanks living" is when we look at the many ways God has blessed us, and we thank Him by sharing His blessings with others. (Invite kids to share specific ways they can participate in “thanks living” this week.)

Take home your cards and put them somewhere as a reminder to show your thanks to God in the way you live. Let's pray and ask God to help us offer our thanksgiving by "thanks living."

Dear God, we come into Your presence with thanksgiving. Help us turn our thanksgiving into "thanks living." Help us notice people around us who are in need and ways we can care for them like You care for us. In Jesus' name, amen.