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Thankfulness Begins with Mom

Posted by Michelle Osborn on

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As I sit here typing this post, my thoughts go back to over a quarter of a century of parenting and homeschooling. These two are so intertwined that I couldn’t tell you where one begins, and one ends. I am thankful, beyond what words can express, for the privilege God has given my husband and me to be able to do both.

During the holidays we often turn our thoughts to being thankful. How do we instill this quality in our children? If we want our children to have a heart of thankfulness, then we need to realize that...

Thankfulness begins with mom

It seems like everything we teach our children begins with us. It is such an overwhelming thought. What happens when I mess up? When I am a bad example? When I honestly don’t know what to do, or how to parent or teach my children?

Parenting is the best… most difficult job on the planet! So much pressure. I have come to realize that even though this is true, we are the ones they see and learn from more than any other person, we, mamas put the pressure on ourselves more than anyone else. We think we must do it all.  We have to be superwoman! God doesn’t even expect us to be super mom!

Everything we need to be the right mama for our children is found in Him.

It all begins with us!

If I want to teach my children to be thankful and show gratitude. First, I must be thankful and show gratitude.

There is no better way to cultivate a heart of thankfulness than to spent time with the Lord

This is hard! Exhaustion is real for all mamas. At different stages of parenting, it is almost impossible to carve out time with the Lord when it is quiet and you can be alone.

When my children were little my time with the Lord was right before I went to bed. It wasn’t easy. I had to make time with God a priority. Because this was also the time that my husband and I could spend alone we decided that reading the Bible together along with a devotional was a great way to spend part of our evening. (a few of our favorites are listed at the end of this post) Choose what time is best for you and stick with it and watch Him work in you!

Verses to help you remember to be thankful and live it out loud at home, around your children.

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

When the toilet overflows, the dog vomits on your new carpet, the you and baby had a hard night and wakes up with an awful cough, your preteen is having a major attitude, and your in-laws are due to arrive that evening, how do you respond.

Do you give thanks when these situations arise?

I’ll be honest. I don’t!

But we always have a choice. Do we react or respond?

The ONLY way I can even begin to be sure I respond instead of reacting is with help from the Lord. When I do react in a way that is not beneficial for my children to see, I need to humble myself before by children and have a talk.

Today, Mom did not respond in the way I should have. It was a hard day for me, but that is not an excuse. When days like this happen, we need to look for the good in the circumstance.

I am thankful that we have a toilet, even when it’s not working properly. Can you imagine having to walk outside to an outhouse just to use the toilet?
Many people in this world don’t have a bathroom in their house.

I am so thankful that God gave us the money we needed to buy the new carpet and strong hands and arms to clean up messes.

Your baby sister is not feeling well. She and I had a long night. Isn’t it so good to know that God has given us doctors and medicine to help us when we need it?

Aren’t Grandpa and Grandma the best. We are so blessed to have them in our lives! I am so happy they are coming tonight!

Please forgive me for my rotten attitued this morning.
I love you, and when you have a hard day or a rotten attitude, I will gently remind you to be thankful. I will ALWAYS love you and be there for you.

I am so thankful that God let me be YOUR mom!
What is something that didn’t quite go your way today but that you can give thanks for?"


Are you thankful for the ability to homeschool? What has homeschooling taught you? I encourage you to take a minute and write down five specific things you have learned. How has God shaped you through homeschooling? Keep it somewhere visible and thank him. Ask him to make you a thankful person in action and in deed and watch your children learn to do the same!

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!

This is an excellent memory verse for the whole family to memorize. Make a game of it. Sit in a circle and each person says one word of the verse. Do it several times and see how fast you can do it.

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

While we teach and admonish our children in all wisdom. (I need His wisdom!), we need to do it with thankfulness in our hearts. Songs are an excellent tool for teaching verses, making chores fun, and lifting the spirit.

Oh, give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples!

Call upon His name often. Ask Him for help, for wisdom, and remember to thank him when he answers. Share answered prayer with your kids. Make His deeds known among your family. 

Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!

Are you thankful for Sunday mornings, for your church, for family devotional times? Do you get excited about it?  

Thank the Lord for your ability to homeschool! I encourage you to take a minute and write down five specific things you have learned, how God has shaped you through homeschooling. Keep it somewhere visible and thank him often. Ask him to make you a thankful person in action and in deed and watch your children learn to do the same!

You are doing an awesome job, Mama! No one loves your children more than you do. God knew exactly what he was doing when he gave them to you, and he will give you everything you need to shape those beautiful lives. Call on him daily to be your strength.

Grab your FREE Thanksgiving Art Printable right here! 


Couples devotions suggestions

Devotions for a Sacred Marriage

Night Light a Devotional for Couples

Good Morning Lord.... Can We Talk?

My personal all-time favorite devotionals,

One Hundred and One Devotions for Homeschool Moms

One Hundred and One More Devotions for Homeschool Moms   


Enjoying the journey,


  Michelle Osborn is the owner and founder of Yellow House Book Rental, specializing in providing homeschool curriculum for rent or purchase, as well as counseling and guidance for homeschool families. She is a wife, a 22-year homeschool veteran, and mom of four children and six adorable grandchildren. Two of her children are now entrepreneurs, running their own businesses and doing quite well. Michelle’s passions include serving by leading worship at her church and encouraging homeschool moms through one on one, social media and speaking engagements. She has found her niche in helping parents homeschooling their teens through the high school years and on to pursue their dreams

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