Thanks be to God
Prayer of Thanksgiving
Edge Night Outline
Goal of this Night
The goal of this Edge Night is to help middle school youth grow in relationship with Christ through prayers of thanksgiving. This night will give the middle school youth an opportunity to share what they are thankful for.
About this night
The topic of this night is the prayer of thanksgiving. When we give thanks to God, we remember that we have been created in His image and that He is our Creator. Through these prayers, we grow in our awareness that everything we have been given comes to us as a gift from God’s unconditional love for us. In Scripture, we are instructed to give thanks to God for everything and at all times. The way that we can give glory to God through our joys and sorrows is through our prayers of thanksgiving. Giving thanks to God also helps us to understand that God has a plan for our lives and He will never leave or forsake us.
The night will begin with a fun game of “Simon Says: Giving Thanks Edition.” Encourage everyone to participate. Have a fun prize available to give to the winner(s). The night will transition into the teaching on the prayer of thanksgiving. During small groups, the youth will discuss the main points of the Proclaim and they will fill out Lord, I Give You Thanks (Handout A on page 23). This will allow the youth to express what they are thankful for in their lives. The closing prayer will give the youth the opportunity to voice one of things for which they are thankful.
Before The Night
Purchase small nails for each middle school youth who will be attending the Edge Night; these will be used in the closing prayer.
During tonight’s Edge session, we discussed prayers of thanksgiving. This is one way to help us grow in our relationship with Christ. We discussed that we can be thankful for everything that we have – from a simple toothbrush, to our families, to even our faith. Your child was encouraged to create a list of things that he/she is grateful for and present those before the Lord in prayer. Additionally, we said prayers of thanksgiving for Christ’s sacrifice for our sins. We can never be thankful enough for God’s love, but we should never stop trying! Each youth was given a nail tonight to remind him/her to stop during the day and be thankful.
Here are some questions and discussion points for the ride home:
- Share what you are thankful for in your life with your child.
- What did you share that you were thankful for tonight?
- What does the nail given to you mean to you personally? How can it help you be more thankful?
The environment for the night will focus around a sacred prayer space. Include candles, fabrics, a cross, a Bible, etc. This space can be set up at the front of the room or in the middle of the room. Use your creativity to emphasize this space.
• Handout A: “Lord, I Give You Thanks” (page 23)
• Pens /Pencils
• ½ sheet of paper per youth
• Markers • Card board
• Small nails – the type found in craft stores and resemble nails used during crucifixion.
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