grandparents having fun with their grandchildren webOne of the peculiar sins of the twentieth century which we’ve developed to a very high level is the sin of credulity. It has been said that when human beings stop believing in God they believe in nothing. The truth is much worse: they believe in anything.—Malcolm Muggeridge.

Grandparents are said to be willing to do anything for their beloved grandchildren. While showering them with gifts, shuttling them to activities, and shielding them from unpleasantries, grandparents need to prioritize the relational above the transactional. What does that mean? As American society devolves into hyperindividualism, baby boomers need to work to restore the institutions and cultural foundations they sought to dismantle: the traditional family, objective truth, transcendent morality, and healthy social structures. The seeds sown in the ‘60s are now being harvested in a crop of mental health issues, depression, loneliness, suicide, and addiction—the byproducts of a posttruth world. The good news is that there is truth and that one of the most influential voices in a child’s life is that of their grandparent(s).

The rich experiences, wisdom, love, and empathy that a grandparent brings into a child’s life are priceless. In March 2022, a survey commissioned by Ancestry, the genealogy company, found that 53% of Americans could not name all of their grandparents. Despite that, the majority of respondents had a high level of interest in knowing their grandparents’ stories and wanted to learn more about their elders. As parents to three young boys, my wife and I cherish not only the practical assistance from our in-laws and parents, but also the intergenerational exchange that enriches our boys’ lives.

There is no one better equipped or better positioned to reinforce our family values to our boys, which are a personal relationship with Jesus, perseverance through challenges, and loving and serving others. This is especially true because I cannot measure up to the virtues that I espouse; it is not about perfect execution but complete commitment, even in failure. Thank you to all of you grandparents who faithfully invest in your grandchildrens’ lives. Whether or not you believe you deserve these accolades, we can all agree that as parents and grandparents, we must invest in the lives of those closest to us. This is a call to action to Christian grandparents and an invitation to attend a workshop to equip and encourage you to leave a rich spiritual legacy with your grandchildren. It is acknowledged that many grandparents are challenged with distance—either relational or geographic, and sometimes both. Grandparents are special people and can find special little ways to connect with grandchildren, whether by a video call or a letter.

At the end of a popular podcast series segment, there is one powerful question: “What is the most courageous thing that you’ve ever done?” The answers have never been about any physical feat but rather working up the courage to confront one’s own emotional and psychological strongholds, almost always some manifestation of pride. It could be a grudge or forgiveness, arrogance, narcissism, or even apathy. We have all made missteps in our lives, but it is always in our humility and transparency that we find restoration and hope. Authenticity with children and grandchildren brings restoration where it is needed and inspires incredible hope for all. Our world needs more hope, and grandparents are the ones to communicate it. Or, to paraphrase the apostle Peter, to share the hope that is within you. This should be the legacy of every grandparent.

Workshop: Grandparenting Matters Saturday, November 12, 2022 | 9 a.m.– 4 p.m. $15 per person or $25 per couple. All participants receive a workbook. Light lunch provided. Additional information and registration at deadline is Sep. 30! Cedar Crest Bible Fellowship, 1151 S. Cedar Crest Blvd., Allentown, PA 18103

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