Before you begin, collect 3 of each: plates, cups, forks, and napkins. If space allows, consider setting up a small table.
Hi! You’re here just in time. Some friends are coming for Thanksgiving and I was hoping you could help me set up. Six people will be eating dinner and we’ll set up right here. (Indicate the space or table the children should use.)
So who wants to help me set the table? (Hand the cups to one child, the plates to another, and so on. Encourage them to set the table.) Remember, there are six people coming to dinner and everyone needs a cup and a plate and silverware. (Wait a short time for the children to realize there are not enough place settings.) Oh no! I didn’t count correctly. Six people will be here, but there are enough dishes for only three people. I need more plates and cups and everything. Boy, it is important to count!
We count a lot of things at Thanksgiving, don’t we? We count how many plates or chairs we need. We count how many pounds of turkey we need or how many rolls we need. What are some other things we count at Thanksgiving? (Allow children to answer.) One very important thing to count at Thanksgiving is our blessings.
What is a blessing? (Allow children to answer.) That’s right. A blessing is a gift from God. At Thanksgiving, we remember all the things we are thankful for. What are some blessings you are thankful for? (Allow children to answer.) What wonderful blessings! We have so many things to be thankful for, and we know that all these things come from God.
Sometimes, though, we forget to be thankful for what we have. We see things that other people have and we want them, too. Have you ever been at a friend’s house and played with a really cool toy? Maybe you got a little jealous and wanted a toy just like that. Or have you ever been jealous when a friend gets to go somewhere fun like Disney World and you don’t? Have you ever looked at what’s in your lunchbox and wanted something else, maybe something your friend is eating?
Listen to what God’s Word tells us about our blessings:
God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19 ESV).
What does it say God will give us or supply for us? (Allow children to answer.) That’s right—the Bible tells us that God will give us everything we need! God knows what we need and God gives it to us. God gives you your home. He gives you people to take care of you and love you. God gives you the chance to go to school and learn. He even gives you just the right toys.
But the most important thing God gives you is your Savior, Jesus. Jesus came down from heaven and lived a perfect life. Then, he died on the cross and came alive again to take away your sins! Jesus forgives you when you are not thankful for your blessings. He forgives you when you want things that are not yours. Your greatest blessing is Jesus, who loves you, forgives you, and promises to be with you forever!
At Thanksgiving and every other day, too, it’s important to praise God for all of your blessings. When we tell God how thankful we are for our toys and food and family and school, we also help remind ourselves of all the blessings God gives us. Let’s all remember to count our blessings, including the wonderful blessing of our Savior and Friend, Jesus!
Let’s say a prayer: Dear God, thank you for sending our biggest and best blessing, Jesus. Thank you for everything we have and for everyone we love. Forgive us when we forget to thank you for the blessings you give us. Help us to remember always to be thankful. We love you! Amen.
You are welcome to copy this article for one-time use when you include this credit line and receive no monetary benefit from it: © 2019 CTA, Inc. Used with permission.