To rejoice and give thanks for all the Everyday Blessings we receive is a cornerstone of our Christian faith. In order to teach this important concept we must first teach our children the definition of rejoicing, and then teach them how to see all that God gives us.
Have the kids open their Bibles to Psalms 118, verse 24.
"This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
What it means to "Rejoice"
Ask the children what it means to rejoice.
To rejoice is to shout ‘yay’ when you get to go to the water park, or when your team scores the winning goal, or when you open that gift you always wanted. To rejoice is to feel so much joy that it can’t be kept inside. You can’t help it, you have to shout and dance.
Not only that, but it also means to thank whoever took you to the water park, or scored the goal that won the game, or gave you that special gift.
Ask "when was the last time you felt like rejoicing?" The kids will respond with opening presents at Christmas or their birthday or maybe going on a vacation or playing with their friends.
And these things are good and reasons for rejoicing. Tell them that we should always feel joy and give thanks for all the good things we are given.
Just another day?
Have the children re-read the verse. Ask them to think about just a regular day and how busy it is.
Our lives these days are so hectic. With school, chores, friends, after school activities, we barely have time to breathe, let alone take the time to rejoice. It seems like we are always rushing around to get things done. It’s easy to get caught up in the day and let it breeze past us without noticing all the Everyday Blessings we are given.
But it is worth the time every day to reflect on all the good things that God gives us, starting with the day itself.
"This is the day that the LORD hath made…"
Isn’t it a miracle that God put the earth just far enough from the sun to keep it warm, and set it spinning just perfectly to give us both the day and the night? This gives us the rain and snow, helps the plants and animals grow. God put our planet in the perfect place.
Like the day itself, there are lots of "Everyday Blessings" that go by unnoticed.
Talk to them about the big blessings in their lives, such as family and friends. Then point out the small blessings as well, seeing an eagle fly high in the sky, or a butterfly sitting on a flower. Playing a game with their brother, sister, or friends is an everyday blessing.
Also, point out that God has made each day special for each person in the world. Everybody’s day is different than everyone else’s. We all have different friends, different families, different stuff that fills our day. God creates a new and special day for everyone in the world, every single day.
"…we will rejoice and be glad in it."
Tell the kids that this is what that verse means; to rejoice and give thanks for all the everyday blessings that happen all around us every day. These things would go unnoticed unless we take the time to think about them.
Have them sit for a moment of silence and think about all the blessings God gives them in during the day. Let them know that taking a moment every day to think about all the everyday blessings will give them a good reason to rejoice.
Finally, have them take out a piece of drawing paper and write Psalms 118:24 at the top. Then have them draw an everyday blessing that God has given them that they can "rejoice and be glad" about.