Last Tuesday, our two campuses came together to celebrate our Thanksgiving Feast with the elementary and adolescent communities. It was a beautiful sight to see and there was so much joy and laughter present.
In the week preceding Thanksgiving, I encouraged the adolescents to share to the Lord what they were grateful for during morning prayer. As this became a habit, I saw small changes in the environment – a deliberate choice to love, a small act of kindness, positive words of encouragement instead of sarcastic jokes. This lens of gratitude was changing these teens.
When I announced to the adolescents that they had been asked to serve the Thanksgiving meal, there was a few who grumbled, or who were bummed they would eat last. I encouraged them that the last will be first and that it was an awesome opportunity for their servant hearts to grow. And on Tuesday, I saw their servant hearts grow THREE SIZES in one day 🙂
With each serving of turkey, ladle of gravy, and piece of pumpkin bread, I witnessed a smile, a joke cracked, and a joyful leadership in each of my students. In their humble serving, they seemed so much more themselves, developing their characters through virtuous service. It was truly beautiful and a wonder to watch. What the adolescents were unaware of as I took photos and encouraged them, is that as they were serving the other students, they were making it onto my gratitude journal that night. How blessed am I. How blessed are we. God is good, all the time.