For the Christian, every day is an opportunity to give thanks to our God. But Thanksgiving is a special day for Christian friends and family to gather, read God’s Word, express thanks together, and enjoy a meal, stories and fun together. Let’s take advantage of these moments we share!
Scripture and Prayer
Some groups that gather pause for scripture and giving thanks before the meal. Others give thanks and pray before the meal, but they stop at meal’s end to share scripture and individually express things for which they are thankful. This can be a powerful time, including for children.
I want to suggest that you give an index card to every person old enough to write early on Thanksgiving day. Ask them to write down up to three things for which they want to give thanks to God. Give assistance to children if they need help. Then at the close of the Thanksgiving meal, ask everyone to read their cards. In my experience, the cards enable better listening. In other words, we listen better because we don’t have to think about what we are going to say–since it is written.
Make Thanksgiving and Giving Thanks Fun!
Our friends at Bible Game Central offer tons of ideas for making Thanksgiving fun. Check out Thanksgiving Games and Activities for many free ideas for a variety of age groups. Here are a few of the games/activities listed there:
- Thanksgiving Trivia
- Thanksgiving Word Search
- Thanksgiving Word Scramble
- Thanksgiving Mad Libs
- Thanksgiving Charades
- Thanksgiving Pictionary
- Thanksgiving Bingo
One of my favorites is Thanksgiving What Am I? which includes printable cards. This game/activity focuses on 1 Thessalonians 5:18 and on Luke 17:11-19 where Jesus cleanses the ten lepers. With younger children, this game can be done by pairing them with a teen or adult.
This experience would likely best take place after the meal before everyone disperses. Remember to announce a time during the meal, and then set your alarm to remind everyone. And keep in mind that these activities can be done on other days than Thanksgiving.
Lots of Other Bible Games
My wife and I have played several of the games from Bible Games Central. We have enjoyed each of them. Several games offer multiple variations, adding challenge and freshness to familiar games.
Some games we have played with our grandchildren, and we look forward to playing more of them when more of our grandchildren get a bit older. Many games benefit from reading skills, but pairing an older preschooler with a teen or adult can make them work. We had fun explaining much about Bible stories with our five-year-old granddaughter.
In the near future, I look forward to sharing reviews of recent game additions. I want to challenge you to look for fun and creative ways (like games) to provide discipleship experiences with your family. Special days like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter are natural times for families and discipleship. Check out the large selection of Christmas Games from Bible Games Central.