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Intentional Grandparenting: What? Why? How? #4

Dear Grandparents who care deeply about the spiritual health of your grandchildren,

Christmas season is, for many grandparents, a mixture of joy, sadness, and stress. If you are experiencing the joy of good and healthy relationships with your grandkids (whether biological or temporarily “adopted”), our one word of encouragement is “Alleluia!”

But often we, at the same time, experience higher-than-usual tension in other grandchild relationships­­. It overcomes our joy—and sometimes breaks our hearts. Satan loves to see that happen.

How can we protect, maintain, or regain our personal spiritual and relational balance in such situations? One crucial step is to stop allowing those stressful relationships to dominate our thoughts. Let’s focus instead on the most vital relationship in life: our relationship with Yahweh, our Father in heaven (Philippians 4:8).

How can we refocus on Him? One way is to ponder the timeless truth revealed in the ancient names and descriptions of God that we see in the Scriptures. Here are several of His names and descriptions; may He soothe your heart today with these realities:

  • Are you being ignored, unnoticed by your grandchild? God is El Roi, “The Living One who sees me” – Genesis 16:6-14; Psalm 139:7-12.
  • Feeling alone, abandoned, or even rejected by your grandchild or their parent(s)?? He is Immanuel, “God with us” – Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23. 
  • Are you worried, anxious, or even depressed about your grandchild’s relationship with you or with God? “The Lord is my Shepherd” – Psalm 23:1-3; Philippians 4:4-8.
  • Are you frustrated, unable to heal that relationship? Brokenhearted? God is Jehovah-Rapha, “The Lord who heals” – Psalm 147:3.
  • Do you struggle with forgiving that grandchild who disappointed or offended you personally? Imitate the mercy, grace, and steadfast love of Jehovah – Exodus 34:4-7a; Luke 15:11-20.

What now? In the words of Romans 15:13 (ESV): “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”

P.S. Does pondering these names of God encourage you? If so, then here’s another way to cultivate your legacy of spiritual influence on your grandkids when they need encouragement: Share one or more of these names of God with them!

(c) John C. Garmo

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