Day 4: Memories

Welcome to Being Thankful for the Little Things, our annual November Thanksgiving family devotional series. This year, we’re focusing on being thankful for the little stuff, the things we often take for granted. Each devotional is meant to be read as a family. At the end of each devotional, you’ll find a journaling prompt (you can download a free journal cover and pages here) and an action step you can take to help out someone else. Thanks for joining us and be sure to share it with your friends via Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest.

Can you remember something funny that happened yesterday or the day before? What about a great vacation that you took? I've been thinking a lot about memories lately and what a wonderful thing they are.

See this little dog? He used to sit at my grandma's house. Now he sits at my house. You see, my grandma is sick and can't take care of herself anymore. She lives in a nursing home. She's not really the grandma I remember. She doesn't really recognize me when I visit. And that makes me sad.

But every time I see this little dog sitting on my fireplace hearth, I'm reminded of all the great times I had with my grandma -- her big hugs, her big laughs, the way she would call me "Sugar" when she saw me.

God gives us memories so that we can remember the good things during the tough times, and I'm so thankful for that. God gives us memories so that we can remember what He's done for us in the past as a reminder of all that He's going to do for us in the future.

You see, God is faithful, that means He does what He says He's going to do. And, Jeremiah 29:11 tells that God has good plans for us. That means even when you're having a tough day at school or you're having trouble with a friend, God has good things in store for you. Our memories of what God has done for us in the past, help us to have faith that God will do what He says in the future.

God wants us to remember what He's done so we can get through the tough times. In a really difficult time for the nation of Israel, God said this: "Remember the former things, those of long ago; I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me (Isaiah 46:9)." God wanted the Israelites to focus on the things that He had done in the past so that they would know that He was with them even during the difficult times.

That's why I'm thankful for memories because they remind us that God is faithful, that He has good plans for us, and that He's still doing great things for us today.

Journal entry: Write down in your Thanksgiving journal three things that you are thankful God has done for you in the past. It could be helping you on a test or helping you find your lost stuffed animals. It could be that He gave you a great mom and dad. Choose three things that God has done for you and write them down.

Action step: In the Old Testament, the Israelites built altars to remind them of the things that God had done. An altar is just a big pile of rocks. Find a rock today and write the words "I remember" on it. Place that rock where you will see it every day. Every time you see the rock, thank God for something He has done for you.