A Grateful Heart

Scripture: Luke 17:11-19

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will learn God cares about our problems.
  • Students will learn nothing is impossible for God if it is within His will.
  • Students will learn God wants us to thank Him for everything he gives us
    and does for us.
  • Students will participate in an art activity to remind them of all of the
    things God has given them.

Guiding Questions:For what things should we thank God and how do we thank Him?

Materials: white card stock with heart drawn on it, markers or crayons

Procedure: Read the story of the Ten Lepers focusing especially on the gratitude of the last leper who returned to thank Jesus. Ask students why they think one leper came back to thank Jesus. Have them share why they think the others did not return to thank Jesus.

Remind students God expects us to be grateful for everything God has given us. Ask them why our gratitude or thankfulness is important to God. (You may have to ask them to think about how they would feel if they gave someone a very special present and the person opened their gift, shrugged and walked away.)

Give students the sheets with the hearts. Explain to them that God gives us many gifts because He loves us. Tell them you want to illustrate as many things on their drawings as they can for which they should thank God. Encourage them to put personal things, as well as things everyone would have in common.

Once students have completed their artwork, have them share what they drew. Encourage students to add new items to their drawings if they wish. Ask students to think of ways they can thank God for His gifts. (Make sure taking good care of them – stewardship – is mentioned as part of the discussion.) Encourage students to use their drawings this week as they pray, to help them remember to thank God for the many blessings He has given them.

Additional Questions:

  • What are some gifts God gives us that are not things that we physically see and touch?
  • What things do you most often take for granted and do not think to thank God or other people for?
  • How do people react when you remember to thank them? How do you think it effects how they treat you in the future?

Supplemental Activity: Have students brainstorm ways to remind themselves to be thankful. Students can write goals (or draw) and share them with each other. Maybe pair them with an accountability partner. Then actively practice them. Come together later to discuss how it changed their day and attitude. Examples: Making sure to pray at each meal is a great start that many Christians make a habit. Maybe write a verse about thankfulness on the refrigerator or closet. Write a verse or prayer on your homework space to be thankful for education. Also think of ways to thank people. Put a keychain on a school bag to remember to thank teachers.
Verse suggestions: 1 Thessalonians 5:18, Psalm 107:1, 2 Corinthians 9:15, Colossians 4:2, Ephesians 5:20