Ideas For Your Service
Thanksgiving Prayer Video “Thank You For It All”
If for some reason your church cannot afford to pay this cost and you would still like to use this video, please send me an email at loewen.dan (at) gmail.com to request a free copy.
A Psalm Of Thanks – Buy Here
The soundtrack for this video is in the key of C and we used it to start our service and went directly into the song ‘Joyful’ by Brenton Brown, which we also play in the key of C. The video and the song after worked really well together.
Every Thanksgiving Sunday we do a food drive for our church food bank. We find this to be a great way to practically show our thankfulness. At some point in our service we encourage people to bring their donations to the front, usually as we play a song or two. This is a nice way to incorporate a physical gesture/action as an act of worship.
This year we will feature several people sharing how they are being thankful in their day to day life, even in some difficult circumstances. It’s amazing to see the impact of someone sharing their story and being honest with struggles but also sharing how they are choosing thankfulness.
One Example was a fellow in our church named Shane who shared about a traumatic accident that changed his life.
Another creative idea for your Thanksgiving service might be to have people email or upload pictures of things they are thankful for. This is a digital version of a more common ‘bring an object you are thankful for’… you could either host this on a Facebook page or have people email their pictures and then make a slideshow to music as part of the service.
Thankfulness is a perspective. The cup half full sort of thing. So sometimes people need a little perspective… the complaint that my water at the restaurant didn’t have ice, or enough ice, or too much ice… is ridiculous when you are aware of all the people who have no clean drinking water. It’s all about perspective. We actually had one person do a ‘complaint-rant’ about ridiculous things that we complain about, traffic, Facebook, our cell phone not being good enough, etc. As the person talked, we put up images on the screen of situations that are so much worse than ours. For example, complaining about it raining to much while a picture of drought shows up. Complaining about not enough croutons on your Caesar Salad while a picture of starving people in Africa is displayed.
The opposite of thankfulness is complaining, so find a way to challenge people on the trivial and menial ways they complain. Facebook is a prime breeding ground for complaint, as it gives you a broad audience that can hear about how you deserve so much better in life. One idea I had was to setup a Facebook page where people can write about what they aren’t complaining about… today I didn’t complain about being stuck in traffic. Ironically they actually get to voice their complaint, but hopefully they still are being aware and conscious of choosing to not dwell on all the aspects of life that fall short.
**Update** I actually found this video that accomplishes pretty much the same thing.
I think the idea of thinking about how our first world problems are trivial. However, I think this an issue with picturing African people. It reinforces the stereotype that all Africans are poor and destitute.