Praying before meals in something that rarely happens in this house. It's pretty much limited to Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas dinners. It's not that we don't know how, or not that we don't care to, it is really just not our practice. Grace before every meal was something that I grew up with, and frankly grew out of. I feel kinda terrible actually admitting that.
Upon recently enrolling the boy in a religious based VPK (because they don't offer VPK at military schools), I decided that I had better start prepping him for praying before his lunch. His school that he will be attending come fall says a prayer before eating, does a small bible study daily, and they go to chapel once a week. You can imagine the sudden feeling of indigestion the hubs is feeling about all of this. ha.
But, if I was going to teach my child to "pray" before meals...it was going to be my way. No thanking God for the food that's on the table, rather just giving "thanks" for the meal. In short just a series of "I am thankful for...", a few from me, and a few from the boy.
So we sat to eat, and I said:
"Tonight we are going to say grace."
the boy: "Grace."
me: "No, we are going to say grace."
the boy: "Grace."
me: "Seriously, let's say grace."
the boy (now much louder and a bit frustrated): "GRACE!!!!!"
That was when I realized that this had turned into a fun little game of "who's on first".
The point being that we did it.
I eventually realized that he had no idea what I meant by "saying grace", so I went first, and told him what I was thankful for that day. He followed with some silly almost 4 year old ramblings about being thankful for "butts, and dogs, and poopoo caacaa", he then got THE LOOK and scraped together some appropriate things to be grateful for.
After doing this for a few days in a row it is starting to become obvious that the boy is gaining and understanding of what it actually means to be thankful as opposed to just saying "thank you". I am teaching him young the importance of living a gracious lifestyle. Showing him that the more gratitude that you display the happier you will be.
Teach your children to be grateful through your actions and words. Let them follow you in expressing their thanks, and maybe the future generations will learn to live humbly instead of living with entitlement.
For now, Happy Thankful Thursday!
Be Grateful & Inspire