As the church, and Children’s Ministries in particular, come to understand the significant impact and difference engaged and intentional grandparents can and will make in the lives of their grandchildren, certainly they will want to focus upon developing strong and effective Grandparenting Ministries. Intentional Christian Grandparenting needs to be a part of every church’s ministry plan,. because Grandparenting Matters.
Last week at the Legacy Grandparenting Summit, I had the privilege and great joy of listening to Crawford Loritts speak to this very thing and today I’m so happy to share with you what he had to say.
First of all, Crawford Lori’s has traveled throughout the US, Caribbean, Asia, Canada, South America, Africa and parts of Europe preaching in churches, evangelistic outreaches, conferences, in colleges and seminaries. He has been the featured speaker at Super Bowls, NCAA Final Four Chapel, and the Pentagon with senior military officers. He and his wife Karen are featured speakers at Family Life marriage conferences and are co-authors of, Developing Character in Your Child. Crawford has written eight books including the newly released, Unshaken. Presently, Crawford serves as Senior Pastor at Fellowship Bible Church in Roswell, GA.
He shared with us from Psalm 78:5-7 and challenged us by saying we are here for a time we cannot see; what we do impacts future generations. He asked us, “What are we going to do with our moments?”, then went on to share how family exists to steward God’s purpose from one generation to the next. Think about this. What we do is not just for “now”. It is for generations we will not even meet!
Pastor Loritts went on to share with us two things we live for, die for, parent for . . . things upon which we build our lives. First, the character of God; how He has worked and what he has done for us. Secondly, the content of Scripture; it is the truth. Always has been. Always will be!
He said; “We must be the desired destination where we want everyone in our family to arrive.” This is so true. If we want our grandchildren to grow to be people who love, know and walk with God, we must love, know and walk with God. If we want our grandchildren to read their Bibles, pray, be thankful, be involved in their church, we must do these things. A big, and serious challenge for us all to keep in mind.
After this serious challenge, Crawford gave us a three step process to follow in passing on a heritage of faith to our grandchildren:
- We need to teach by all means possible. We need to keep the Character of God in view and take every opportunity we have to pass on our faith with a view to our own “expiration date”.
- We need to remember one day we will be, “very dead” – we need to, “grandparent from the grave”. This means we believe God and pray for a time we can not see. We pass on a heritage of faith now, to our grandchildren and pray for their grandchildren and great-grandchildren to also be impacted.
- We need to be focused and intentional, so we do not “minimize prayer, God’s Word and what He has done”. We need to pass it on and live it out!
He then encouraged us with how if we do these things, we will see the end result – the “product” . . .
- Our grandchildren will set their hope in God and have a “God confidence”! They will see how He answered prayer and how He “came through” for us and in their own lives.
- Our grandchildren will not forget what He does and will understand history – in their own family and the world around them through this “view-finder”.
- Our grandchildren will have the will to obey; they will understand they were born to obey God.
I found Pastor Loritts to be challenging and encouraging and absolutely am taking to heart all he had to say. This general session was one of my favorites as he so clearly described what it means to be an intentional Christian grandparent and how grandparenting matters for now and for a time we cannot see!
As you think about the grandparents in your church, do you not want them to understand and take to heart these things as well? Do you see how grandparents who are intentional Christian grandparents, as Crawford Loritts challenged us to be, will make a significant difference in the lives of the children in your ministry and in your ministry as well?