November Virtue – Gratitude

This month in Elementary, we’re teaching on the virtue of Gratitude: Letting others know you see how they’ve helped you.¬† Below is a message from¬†Melanie Williams, editor in chief of 252 Basics, the company that writes our curriculum, about Gratitude:

Gratitude is different from most of the virtues we talk about. It’s a characteristic God doesn’t have but expects us to have. Think about it: God, our all-powerful, self-sufficient Creator, doesn’t NEED anything, never got anything from anyone, and will never have to express gratitude. But He inspires gratitude (Psalm 100). Every good thing comes from God (James 1:17), so gratitude is a proper response toward Him. In fact, if we didn’t express gratitude, we wouldn’t be recognizing who God is and what He’s done for us. Plus, Jesus modeled gratitude for us (Luke 9:16). And He had something to say about it directly. Read Luke 17:11-19, about the ten lepers meeting Jesus. This encounter shows that the opportunity to demonstrate gratitude occurs every time someone meets a need for someone else. Unfortunately, only one of the ten chose to express gratitude. We don’t know why the other guys didn’t return. Maybe they were so caught up in celebrating with family and friends they didn’t even think about it. Or maybe they thought that what was given to them was something they’d earned – sort of an entitlement mentality. This month we are going to explore how to stop the busyness and “you owe me” excuses and REWIND AND REMIND ourselves exactly what has been done for us. We will take time to just say thank you. We will remember how others have helped us. We won’t let an entitlement mentality infect our thinking, causing the wrong attitude to spoil our gratitude. We are going to make sure we let others know we see how they’ve helped us and take time to celebrate what God has done.

So, in November we’ll be talking about GRATITUDE, letting others know you see how they’ve helped you.

Week 1 is about Jesus healing 10 men with leprosy (Luke 17). Bottom Line: Take time to just say thank you.

Week 2 is about the list maker: Paul, making a list of those he’s thankful for (Romans 16). Bottom Line: Take time to remember how others have helped you.

Week 3 is Jesus’ parable of the vineyard workers (Matthew 20). Bottom Line: Don’t let the wrong attitude spoil your gratitude.

Week 4 will focus on the main feasts celebrated in Old Testament days (Exodus 23). Bottom Line: Take time to celebrate what God has done.

And for the 5th Week: A 252 Basics special edition on one of five “faith skills”: Give to God (serve and invest). This is a “bridge” lesson, spanning gratitude (in November) and generosity (in December). You don’t want to miss this one!