Thanksgiving Testimonies: How To Share Your Story On Thanksgiving Day

by Bobby Gilles

in Testimony Tips

Charlie Brown Thanksgiving screen shot - Peanuts gang laughing around the table

The Peanuts gang knows how to laugh and share together

Each Thanksgiving holiday here in the U.S., the Gilles family and our cousins the Browns join together for a big Thanksgiving dinner at my cousin Andrew and Debbie’s house. A few years ago Debbie started us on a tradition that is so simple but so effective at communicating the narrative of our family and each member that I hope you’ll begin something like it, if you don’t do so already.

I’m sure many of you do this. If not, but you do something similar, Kristen and I would love to hear about it. What we do is this:

Before the Thanksgiving meal, before we pray, we form a big circle. We take turns sharing what we’ve been thankful for over the past year. Each year is more difficult for some of us than others, more laden with difficulties — even tragedies — or more blessed with obvious gifts. No two years are alike in the pattern of hard times, good times, successes and failures, beginnings and endings.

But we’ve always found that everyone can thank God for something. The exercise also forces us to orient our thinking on the Giver and His many good gifts to us every day, like the rising sun, breath in our lungs, the rain, a roof over the rain, and hundreds more blessings we take for granted.

Bobby and Kristen Gilles family Thanksgiving photo -- Bicep-flexing by Bobby in the background

That's me, flexing my huge biceps in the back during our 2010 family Thanksgiving photo

Some of us are more extroverted than others. Some of us won’t do any other form of public speaking in front of a large group until the next Thanksgiving holiday. But the exercise forces each of us to contemplate our lives, God’s provision, protection and guidance, and our reasons to be thankful.

Given how large our family has grown, this Thanksgiving testimony exercise is also a way for us to reacquaint ourselves with each other, and in some cases learn for the first time about trials, achievements, heartaches and blessings our family members have gone through. Though we’d love to stay as connected as we were when we were a smaller family, almost all living in the same town and attending the same church, life circumstances don’t permit it.

Thanksgiving day is a perfect opportunity to turn back the tide of busyness, cross the miles and enjoy one another. This little exercise is a good ice breaker and an easy way to hear from everyone, no matter how introverted.

Check out our free Thanksgiving Worship Songs playlist — 22 songs of thanksgiving and praise that you can listen to freely on Spotify, in one streaming playlist.

And you may also be interested in our Biblical Thanksgiving: What The Bible Really Says About Giving Thanks


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