When you think about loving your grandchildren, for most of us, this comes very easily. The hugs, snuggles, “I love yous”, the laughing and the time spent together – all part of the wonderful love between grandparents and grandchildren.
Now, don’t get me wrong. There is a wonderful love between parents and children, too, but I describe the difference in the following way. When children first see their parents at the start of their day, they may say, “hello” or “good morning” and they may not. But, when grandchildren first see you – at least when they are young – no matter where you are – they shout at the tops of their voices, “Grandma!!!” and run to you as fast as their little legs can carry them, shouting all the while, “Grandma!!!!”
This is the difference. Yes, our grandchildren love their parents with all their hearts, but there is a different, special, wonderful love between a grandparent and a grandchild!
And, yes, this love between our grandchildren and us shows itself in the glad greetings, the wonderful times spent together, but it also shows itself in the way we are intentional about the things which really matter. The things which bring a joy which is far deeper than the happiness we experience with the greetings, hugs and snuggles.
All of these things are wonderful and amazing parts of being a grandparent and I love them all! But, there are some things which are even better. Things which are part of being intentional when it comes to loving our grandchildren and intentional about sharing God’s love with them.
I remember, for example, the day my oldest grandchild called me on the phone when he was four years old to tell me he was “part of God’s family” . . . absolutely one of the most wonderful, amazing, joy-filled and best days of my life! His momma had the joy of leading him to Jesus and then had him call me. I had the joy of receiving the great news, rejoicing with him and of having a conversation about what he did. I was able to affirm how much God loves him and let him hear how much his grandma rejoiced at his news. This is part of intentional love.
Or the day my five-year old grandson and I were talking about how to get to Heaven and he said he wanted to go to Heaven. He told me; “I believe in Jesus!” Then he turned to his three year old brother and said; “Shane, if you want to go to Heaven you have to believe in Jesus!” To which Shane said; “I want to go to Heaven . . . I believe in Jesus!” Definitely one of the most wonderful, amazing, joy-filled and best days of my life!
Throughout the previous year we had been talking about God, His love, and discovering what the Bible said. On this particular day, my grandson was ready to respond. I love my grandsons and am intentional in sharing my love to point them to God’s far greater love.
But, once they turn to Jesus, my “job” to be intentional in sharing love does not end. Most weekends when my three grandsons have their sleep-overs at my house, we do a Science the Bible & Fun lesson – the boys love science projects and they have been enjoying the opportunity to learn about real Bible people who chose to know, love and walk with God.
While they did not initially enjoy keeping a prayer journal, they have come to actually look forward to it! The boys give me their prayer requests, which they put in their journals and I put in mine. We also draw or write the things for which we are thankful – along with how God answers our prayers.
One of the things we have been praying about with my five-year old grandson is for him to have great days at school. The other evening my husband and I went to stay with the boys at their home for a little bit while their parents had a meeting to attend. When we walked into their kitchen, he ran up and told me he had a really great day at school! They he said; “Grandma, did you pray for me today?” I told him I had certainly been praying for him. He said; “I thought so! This is why I had such a great day!”
Yes! Most definitely, absolutely one of the most wonderful, amazing, joy-filled and best days of my life! I love how the boys are able to see God answer our payers – and have the growing trust in His love for them and a growing confidence He will answer our prayers! I love my grandsons and am intentional about how I show my love to them and about how I point them to God’s love for them. My grandsons are growing in their walk with God and this grandma’s heart is filled with joy!
Lynda has three sweet rascal grandsons who make her heart happy! She is the author of Deeper In 4 Grandparents & Parents, Too! Praying the Scriptures for the Children You Love, It Is Impossible to Spoil Grandchildren and Science, the Bible & Fun – a curriculum with 52 weeks of Bible learning and fun for grandparents and grandchildren. She also writes the blog, grandma’s cookie jar. Lynda is a Senior Writer and Editor for the Legacy Coalition.