Today we have a guest posting her recommendations on how grandparents she sees can and are touching eternity by influencing their grandchildren. Lori Wildenberg is a licensed parent and family educator and is a co-author, along with Becky Danielson, of Empowered Parents: Putting Faith First (Bridge Logos, 2003).
Thanks for sending us your practical, inspiring message today, Lori. Here’s Lori’s guest post:
By Lori Wildenberg
Parenting for grandparents. What? Yes! Many Nanas and Papas, Grannies and Pappies, Grandmas and Grandpas attend my parenting classes. They are highly invested and involved in their grandkids’ lives. These folks want to brush up on their communication with little kid skills or gain a better understanding of their own children as parents. Attending games, watching recitals, and babysitting are some of the many things today’s grandparents do. Present day grandmothers or grandfathers are typically a big presence in the young ones’ lives.
But… what if you are one of the many Memas or Granddads separated from your grandkids by miles?
For most of my kids’ growing up years, they have not had the benefit or blessing of having grandparents live close by. But miles don’t change the hearts of the people involved.
Connection is important to the kids and adults alike.
Of course visits and phone calls make a big impact but many grandparents want to do more. They long to make an eternal difference yet the distance is a huge road block to accomplishing their heart’s desire.
My colleague and friend, Kirk Weaver, of Family Time Training, passed along a great solution to this problem. He told me how, even at a distance, an older person can impact a younger one’s soul. Letters. Yep. Old fashioned letters–the snail mail type–with a little cash enclosed. The money does come with a stipulation: ten percent must be given away to a cause, a church, or someone in need. More money will come the following month when the child communicates back how the funds were used.
Think of all the great and meaningful conversations the grandparent and grandchild can have regarding giving, needs, wants, and worthy charities. They could pray about where the Lord would like the money to go. This deliberate interaction has the potential to adjust a child’s thinking about money and about faith.
Money is a tool to be utilized, entrusted to us by a generous God.
So… long distance grandparents, you can touch your grandchildren’s eternity by getting out those stamps, envelopes, and a little cash. Make a plan to invest in the younger generation’s lives.
The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.
1 Timothy 6:10
What ideas do you have for impacting your grandkids future?
Lori Wildenberg, co-founder of 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting and Licensed Parent and Family Educator, is passionate about coming alongside parents and encouraging them to parent well. She loves mentoring moms and dads and speaking on the topic of parenting. She is co-author of EMPOWERED PARENTS: Putting Faith First and co-columnist for the “Parenting Prose” column in Marriage Magazine. Lori lives in Colorado with her husband and four children. Visit http://www.loriwildenberg.com or http://www.1Corinthians13Parenting.com for more information.
Letters from my grandmother, with whom I grew up, are so cherished! I’m a new grandparent – 1 year old tomorrow. I love every minute of it!
Lori, I am the National Prayer Coordinator for Christian Grandparenting Network and the author of Grandparenting with a Purpose: Effective Ways to Pray for your Grandchildren. I would appreciate it if you would check out my website at http://www.grandparentingwithapurpose.com. This month I am promoting the “Grandparents@Prayer (G@P) groups challenging grandparents to unite in prayer. I see such an urgency to pray for our grandchildren in our enviroment which is deprived morally and spiritually.