Why Do We Say Thank You? helps teach children that thankfulness is a choice.
From the moment he wakes up, the young boy complains about everything. The sun is too bright, his pancakes are icky, and everything is so terribly boring. He can’t see why everyone else is having such a wonderful time—until his eyes are opened to the wonder of God’s world. Now he begins to see all the great things he’s missed and learns to be grateful.
Often, kids (and grownups too) don’t feel thankful. It’s easy to complain about things, even when there are so many wonderful blessings all around us. But in the Bible, God says “in everything give thanks.” The young boy in Why Do We Say Thank You? learns that thankfulness is a choice—it’s about paying attention to God and the glory of the world he has made.
Champ Thornton, PhD, is an acquisitions editor at Crossway. He and his wife, Robben, live in Newark, Delaware, have been married since 1996, and enjoy being parents to three energetic teenage children. He’s the author of numbers of books for kids and families, including The Radical Book for Kids, The Serpent Slayer and the Scroll of Riddles, and Why Do We Say Thank You? Learning to Be Grateful.
Brad Woodard, BFA, has been illustrating his entire life, but decided on a major in graphic design at college. Post-college, while working as a designer, he rediscovered his love for illustration. Eventually and naturally, Brad’s illustrating and design fused together. He and his wife now run their own design and illustration studio, Brave the Woods. In addition to working with major brands, Brad shares his expertise via lectures, workshops, and online courses. He is the illustrator for Finding Jesus on Upside Down Days and Why Do We Say Thank You?
“While grumbling and complaining easily flow from our lips, thankfulness is a cultivated virtue. Champ Thornton’s new children’s book, Why Do We Say Thank You? Learning to Be Grateful, is a whimsical and fun-to-read story that points children to God as the source of all that’s good and the reason we can always be thankful. This book is a needed encouragement for both children and their parents!”
Melissa Kruger, Author; director of Women’s Initiatives, The Gospel Coalition
“If ‘I’m bored!’ is your child’s favorite phrase, this is the book for you! The comical, colorful main character whines and wears a massive scowl . . . until he finally revisits his day through the lens of gratitude for God’s kindness and creativity. Then ‘I’m bored’ becomes ‘Oh wow! Look!’ Champ’s story deftly demonstrates the power of perspective—to kids and their parents!”
Jim Daly, President, Focus on the Family
“Ever wonder how to replace your kid’s grumpiness with gratitude? Using captivating rhyme and dazzling illustrations, Champ Thornton points the way. This read-aloud delight drives gospel truth home to minds and hearts.”
Barbara Reaoch, Author of several books, including A Jesus Easter
“Champ Thornton writes the kinds of books we want to read: funny and fun, with a message on gratefulness that kids (and some of us grownups) need to hear. Why Do We Say Thank You? might just be the cure for the chronic complainer in our households and in our hearts.”
Hannah C. Hall, Bestselling author of God Bless You and Good Night
“How many times have you said to your children, ‘Say thank you’? This little book will help them learn the God-centered reason why it’s important. There’s even a suggested list of conversations to have with your children after reading the book, as well as some activities to train them in the practice of gratitude.”
Donald S. Whitney, Professor of Biblical Spirituality and Associate Dean at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, KY; author of Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life, Praying the Bible, and Family Worship
“Another great book by Champ Thornton! Reading Why Do We Say Thank You? is like holding up a mirror before our children to help them detect any lack of thankfulness in their own lives. In addition to the engaging story, Thornton provides practical helps to give parents and grandparents the follow-up tools they need to help build the message of thankfulness into their kid’s hearts and lives. I’ll be reading this one to my grandkids.”
Marty Machowski, Family Pastor; author of The Ology, Wonderful, God Made Boys and Girls, and other gospel-centered resources for church and home
“We teach our kids to say thank you and we long for them (and us, too!) to feel genuine gratitude. But do we all remember why? This gem of a book from Champ Thornton will remind you and your kids why gratitude is the right response to God’s good gifts.”
Gloria Furman, Author of A Tale of Two Kings and Labor with Hope
“Seeing life as a good gift from God is the heartbeat of a posture of gratitude. Champ created a wonderful resource to help parents and caregivers foster a deep sense of gratitude in the children in our lives. This book helps address moments when your child feels bored, complains more often, and is ungrateful not only by engaging your child’s imagination but also by offering parents practical wisdom to help you child learn to be thankful.”
Justin S. Holcomb and Lindsey A. Holcomb, Authors of God Made All of Me, God Made Babies, and God Made Me in His Image
“Cleverly written in rhyme, Why Do We Say Thank You? gives parents a tool to instruct their children in the much-needed grace of gratitude. After presenting the story of a bored, ungrateful boy whose eyes are opened to see God’s goodness, Champ includes concrete suggestions to parents desiring to cultivate an attitude of gratitude.”
Sally Michael, Author; director of publishing and training, Truth78
“Thank you, Champ, for giving us a gospel-centered way to help our kids and grandkids move from grumpy to grateful. What a great way to help kids learn to adjust their attitude and learn that it’s God’s will for us to give thanks in all things (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
Bob Lepine, Longtime cohost of FamilyLife Today; teaching pastor, Redeemer Community Church Little Rock, AR
“James tells us to ‘count it all joy’ when we encounter various trials. But can children look at the ledger of their days and add up even difficult things as reasons for praise? They can! But only if we help them to see that every good gift comes from God’s hands. That’s what Champ Thornton aims to do in Why Do We Say Thank You? Learning to Be Grateful.Pick up this book and help even your youngest boys and girls put on an attitude of gratitude.”
Jared Kennedy, Editor, The Gospel Coalition; author of The Beginner's Gospel Story Bible and Keeping Your Children's Ministry on Mission
“Gratitude is at the heart of true worship and a lack of gratitude is what birthed the fall in the Garden. This is why teaching kids to be thankful, as a spiritual habit, is so vital in raising them to love Jesus. With beautiful illustrations and poignant prose, Champ Thornton invites your family into a discussion about being thankful. You will want this book in your home, in your kids’ ministry, and as a gift to parents you love.”
Daniel Darling, Director of the Land Center for Cultural Engagement; bestselling author of The Characters of Christmas and The Characters of Easter; columnist for World Magazine
“Why do I say thank you? Because my friend, Champ, has written another outstanding gospel-centered kid’s book! This is a topic that every parent can relate to and every child needs help with at times. Champ lays out a clear, doable path toward thankfulness in children, and most importantly, the ‘why’ behind it.”
Joshua Cooley, Bestselling author of Heroes of the Bible Devotional, Creator, Father, King: A One Year Journey With God, and The One Year Devotions with Jesus
“Would it be too predictable for me to say I’m thankful for this book? Even if it is, I’m going to say it anyway. I’m thankful for this book and particularly for the gracious counsel it will bring to children who find it all too easy to say they’re bored. Enjoy!”
Elyse Fitzpatrick, Author of Give Them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids with the Love of Jesus
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This book teaches the importance of gratitude in an interesting way, where this little boy complains about literally everything! Ends with a wonderful lesson about truly being thankful. Great book, and I would highly reccommend it!
I felt it lacked good doctrine. the boy is a brat for one day, has a dream and then realizes that God made everything and we need to be thankful for that.
Great book for today's kids! I read it to my class of 3-4 year olds They loved it too! I love the poetic style and perfect illustrations too! I recommended it to several friends. Champ, I can't wait to get your next book!
Children often find every reason to grumble. Mine are always telling me they are bored. This book is a helpful tool to help children overcome bad attitudes, complaining, and ingratitude. It helps children see God's creation's wonder and goodness and trust our forgiveness in Jesus. Gratitude is at the heart of worship, and teaching kids to be thankful is vital in raising them to love Jesus. God is the source of all joy and contentment, and I love how this story demonstrates the power of seeing the world with the proper perspective (through the lens of Jesus)! I enjoyed the section at the end of the story for parents, "Helping Your Child Learn to be Thankful," as it helps intentionally continue the conversation past the book.
A young complainer finds every reason to grumble. Everything in his life seems to be as boring as boring can be. Author Champ Thornton’s wonderful rhyme carries Why Do We Say Thank You?‘ through a fun-filled day that our grumpy main character can’t appreciate. Later, a talk from his father prompts a dream that helps the boy look at the little things in life with more wonder and appreciation of God’s gifts. The title of ‘Why Do We Say Thank You?‘ led me to believe the book would have a different focus than it actually does. Even the subtitle of ‘Learning to be grateful‘ doesn’t quite capture the focus of appreciating the beauty and blessing of all of God’s gifts. In any case, the concept is an important lesson for young Christian learners. Mr. Thornton is a talented Christian children’s book author and this book is no exception. Brad Woodward’s delightful, bright, full-color illustrations grab attention and include a nice assortment of diverse characters. Why Do We Say Thank You would be a great book for children who tend to complain about being bored or who have a difficult time appreciating the little things in life. If a child you love needs to learn to be grateful, this book would be a good starting point. The suggestions at the end of the book will help parents carry this lesson of gratitude forward into daily life.