On a number of occasions, we have been asked: how can I be a grandparent who impacts my grandchildren for Jesus?
The father of a righteous man has great joy; he who has a wise son delights in him.Proverbs 23:24
A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies.Proverbs 31:10
If we want to impact our grandchildren, the first thing we must do is to pray for our sons and our married daughters. If they are believers that is a bonus. We all need wisdom, patience and grace when dealing with children. It is great to ask God to give these gifts to our children as they seek to bring up their children.
Children’s children are a crown to the agedProverbs 17:6
Always see your children’s children as a precious gift and a blessing from the Father.
It is so important to engage with them, building strong and good relationships. Love and time, listening and encouraging are precious gifts we can give them, and they cost nothing. It is also good to speak to your children and discover any concerns they might have.
I have a prayer diary and every Monday morning I pray for all my children and my grandchildren.
Pray continually1 Thessalonians 5:17
So, Mondays is not the only time we pray for the family. Whenever the Lord brings them to mind, we pray for them.
If Prayer is the priority, then Love runs it a very close second. As God’s love flows into us so we must allow that love to flow out and touch our children and our grandchildren.
Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.1 Corinthians 11:1
That should be our unachievable goal, as far as our family are concerned. To Love as Jesus has loved us.
It is so important that we are never critical or judgemental with regards to our grandchildren. Love binds us together and we must understand that they are a generation away from us. They live in a very different world than we lived in. The key thing is we Love them and hopefully they do or will come to love Jesus.
Talking about different worlds, from 2001 to 2018 I wrote My Story for my grandchildren. Not to be outdone my children demanded to have a copy of it as well. It was an A4 email, sent out at the end of each month. It started from the day I was born to the present day. In it I told my life story, which gave me the opportunity of sharing with them my walk with the Lord. I was able to write about how I met Jesus and the many ways he guided and provided for me and the family over the years. My Story, over 200 editions,help me to share with all the family how our faith had helped us in the good and not so good times. It was my testimony of God’s faithfulness, and I know it impacted them. They still have it on their computers.
I believe My Story encouraged three of my grandchildren to ask me to baptise them.
I had already had the joy and privilege of baptising all my children. Another contributing factor to their decision about baptism, I believe, was that our grandchildren had two birthday presents each year until they were 18. One on their physical birthday and one on the day they were born again, their spiritual birthday.
Doing things with our grandchildren is also very important. Being involved with them in creative and sporting activities. Perhaps introducing them to new activities or interests. Outings and sleepovers, showing an interest in what they are doing at school and the friendships they are building, all help to build a strong bond between the generations.
Christmas is always a very special family time and party games were and still are a great favourite with all the children and grandchildren. I still have some of the games I played as a child with my parents, aunts, uncles and cousins. They are still firm favourites, as are some of the new ones. It is so important to play together. Christmas and other meals are often occasions when the family photo albums come out. How the grandchildren love to see their parents and themselves growing up. Such wonderful memories!
We always pray with the family before we share our meals. A family that prays and plays together, stays together.