I had a conversation with a friend of mine at church recently who is also a grandma (she has 11 grandchildren!). We were talking about how important it is for grandparents to pass on a heritage of faith and she shared with me an old Arabic saying, which I’m delighted to share with you today! It goes like this . . . “If you do not have a grandparent in your home; go buy one!”
Here in the USA, we do not tend to value grandparents as they are in other places around the world. And, here in the USA grandparents often do not understand the value they have to offer when it comes to passing on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren. Many grandparents even have the attitude their “job” is “finished”, their children are adults and now they can just retire, relax and enjoy life.
The truth, however; is our job is not “finished”. We have a very important job to do. The average age of the first-time grandparent is 47 and most of us live to be at least 78 years old – our lives are not over! We have much to offer and can not just toss away these years by focusing on ourselves and not being intentional about passing on a heritage of faith.
Think about it. Which matters more? Taking another trip or seeing your grandchildren love, know and walk with Jesus? Clearly the trip is not even in the same, “ballpark” when it comes to importance.
We have to grandparent on purpose. We have to be engaged. Some of the most important and most precious people in our lives need to see an example of people who faithfully love and follow Jesus and who will point them to how to do the same. We want to keep Jesus and knowing and following Him in the forefront of our grandchildren, so they do not forget Him, but instead remember all He does for them and experience the joys of following Him themselves.
Being a grandparent who faithfully passes on a heritage of faith is not only important and essential for us to do; it will be something which is fulfilling and one of the biggest sources of joy for us as well – far outshining retiring and traveling! Let’s be the grandparents who grandparent on purpose!
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.