I am not permitted to speak to my grandchildren (ages 8 and 5) about God or Jesus. My son (who is divorced) supervises my visits when I go to see them.
I pray for them and love them and do art with them and send boxes to them with clothes and little gifts. My son has grown up in a Christian home but is co-parenting, and his ex-wife is vehemently opposed to anything Christian. It makes me sad.
What advice do you give to grandparents like me?
I understand your sadness, but it is important for you to abide by your son’s request to not speak about God or Jesus when in his home.
Doing this will allow you to continue to have a relationship with him and your grandchildren. You want to keep those relationships going as doing so will allow your son and grandchildren to see your faith in action, even if you don’t talk about God or Jesus.
Continue to pray for them, especially that God would soften their hearts and provide believers around them who can minister to them in a variety of ways while you can’t.
Find out what each child is interested in and make efforts to be a part of those interests by talking with them about their interests, sending books about topics of interest, and playing games that incorporate those interests. You can play in person when you visit or virtually when you are not with them. Perhaps you can set up a time to visit them online once a week.
If the 8-year-old is interested in animals, for example, you could play a guessing game that tells a few facts about an animal and then he or she has to guess which animal is on a picture on a card. If the 5-year-old likes to dance, you could ask him or her to dance for you and teach you how to do a dance.
When you connect with their interests, you communicate that you care about what they care about, and that builds trust and strengthens bonds. The connections that you build now will be remembered and when they are old enough to make their own decisions, they may seek you out.
I have seen this happen many times. In the meantime, pray for your future relationships with them.