Thursday, November 12, 2009

Gratitude Family Home Evening

This last Monday we had a really great family home evening. It was one of the simpler ones we have done, and thats ok!!

Wanting to focus on gratitude I told the story of the 10 lepers. I always try to tell the story in my own words so the kids can understand a little better, but I think its really important too to read directly from the scriptures and help the kids understand that too. Skylar was really touched by the story, and couldn't believe only one man went back and said thank you. We talked about how we want to be like the one that told Jesus thank you.

Then I showed them the gratitude jar I had made. I am sure many of you do something similar, I think its a great reminder :) I just took an old formula can, decorated it with scrapbook paper and ribbon, and filled it with strips of paper and a pen. Then we all went around and said something we were grateful for. Now every night at dinner we do the same thing, and so far it really has brought a special spirit of thankfulness and gratitude into our home.

As I was bearing my testimony to my kids and expressing my love for my family, I got a little emotional :) My daughter asked why I was crying and I told her that is how I feel my Heavenly Father and Jesus talking to my heart. She said she felt like crying too, but she wasn't sad. I explained that she is just like me, that is Heavenly Father and Jesus talking to her heart, telling her the things we learned about were true and expressing his love for her. I believe we can't make our children have spiritual experiences, we can only create the proper environment for them to occur, and when they do help our children recognize them. What are some things you have done to help your children understand feeling the Spirit??


Mike said...

Tonii, reading your post touched my heart :) - What an amazing stage you are in with your sweet little family.

Cara and Mike said...

oops! That was me, sorry!

Cara and Mike said...

Thank you so much for your post. You reminded me of how important it is to help our little ones feel the spirit, no matter how young they are. When I first brought Sammy home, I was so sensitive to that. I had church music on all of the time. I put on the Testaments so he could feel close to the spirit, as he had just left his home with his Heavenly Parents.... and since then I have always sang primary songs to him, and have pictures of Jesus by his crib.. etc... but today, your post came to my mind when Sam woke up early from his nap screaming. I sat down with him in the rocking chair, snuggled him as he was still crying, and we said a prayer together... we asked Heavenly Father to help him feel happy and not to be sad. I asked that Sam could feel his love and be able to relax.... during the prayer, he stopped crying and his eyes got droopy. When I ended, I sang to him "A Child's Prayer" and he drifted off to sleep... Mike at schoo late tonight, but I knew we still needed to have FHE. So I pulled out our FHE kit, a set of gospel pictures that I put in page protectors, and let Sammy flip through the pages while we talked about what they were, he doesn't understand much, but I know the spirit was there and that he could feel it. After that we read "I'm trying to be like Jesus" (a board book to the lyrics of the song) and looked at the pictures, he had me read it three times. It was so sweet. It was an amazing night, thank you for your inspiration... I love ya Tonii!