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How You Can Make Thanksgiving More than a Meal

Meredith Mahon Morris November 17, 2014

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November is the month that people focus on the faithfulness of God and thank Him for all the wonderful things He’s done. People post daily “Thanks” on Facebook, families put together thankfulness books with their children, children’s ministers make turkeys and people eat way more than they should. It’s a great time of year. Thanksgiving helps us remember all the great things God has done for us, but it’s also a great time to reach out to others in need. We can thank Him for what He’s done, and join Him in what He’s doing.

Leverage the holidays for your church and community. Many have more than enough to be thankful for, and are looking for ways and opportunities to reach out to others. Reaching out is good for the soul. Reaching out builds relationships both with those you serve and those you serve with. Church members who reach out together grow closer to God spiritually and to each other relationally. Here are some ways to make Thanksgiving more than a meal.

Volunteer in a local mission. These organizations need help during November and December. They usually have long term and short term ways to help on Thanksgiving. You can donate your Thursday evening to serving mashed potatoes and demonstrating the love of Christ, or you can donate a short section of your Thursday morning to delivering meals.

Host a Community Thanksgiving Dinner. Hungry people live in your community, and one free meal will do them some good. Lonely people live there too, and they could use the fellowship that comes from eating with others. Many older people don’t have money for a special meal in their fixed budgets or have family around with which to enjoy the day. Community dinners are a great way to meet both of these needs.

Invite people to your table. Sometimes, the best way to reach out is to invite people into your home. Make extra food and invite families who are new to your area or people who live alone to share the day with your family. Sharing your Thanksgiving is a great way to reach out to others. It’s easier to invite someone to dinner than it is to a church service. Meals provide great ways to develop life changing relationships.

Food Raiser. People give food easier than they give money. Find a group who is giving away food to families in need and help them reach their goal. You can invite your friends and family with you to gather canned food for people in need. This is an easy, low-pressure way for someone to make a difference.

What other ways have you found to leverage Thanksgiving and help others? Tell us how you do it.

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