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God's Pattern For Grandparenting


Grand-parenting Chart  

 Deuteronomy 30:19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:

 This Scripture indicates that we have the ability to make choices.  God never says foolish things.  If we had no ability to choose, then this command would be foolish, so we do have the ability to chose and our choices will certainly have an impact on our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and so on.

Psalm 103:17 But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness to children's children;

Grandparents can pass on the righteousness of God that they themselves have discovered in the Holy Spirit.  While verses 1-5 tell us not to forget all God's many benefits, verse 17 tells us that God's righteousness can be passed on to grandchildren.

  • Acceptance: Grandparents ought to be interested and involved in the lives of their grandchildren.  Ephesians 1:6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.  As God has accepted us, we need to accept our grandchildren as they are.
  • Encouragement: Cheer your grandchildren on regardless of their endeavor (so long as it is not sin).  Use encouraging words such as, "You can do it!" or "Good work!"  Words connected to touch become very powerful.  Just a pat on the back or shoulder or a little hug associated with words of encouragement make all the difference.
  • Expectations: Let your grandchildren know what you expect from their activities.  Grandchildren tend to meet expectations, but expectations that are too low or that are fuzzy just confuse them.  Ask them, "What are you going to do with your life?"  Whatever they tell you, accept it and explore it.  "How do you get a job as a jet pilot?"  "What will your life be like if you have that kind of job?"  Set expectations for the kinds of friends that your grandchildren choose.  You can have an influence in all of these things if you begin early.
  • Gifts: Sometimes, Grandchildren concentrate on material gifts.  Those are fine, but the most important gifts are your time, yourself, and Jesus.  Give the gift of teaching your grandchildren to live an orderly life.  Teach them thankfulness for every gift.
  • Creativity: Give your grandchildren some tools of creativity.  A sandbox, an easel and water colors, sidewalk chalk, and Legos are all examples.  Sometimes, just a big cardboard box or some such thing can be used.  Cut up some little blocks of wood.  A hot glue gun, with a little training, can turn those little blocks into engineering marvels.  Don't do projects for them.  Let them create, then accept what they make.  Accept their approach to what they create.  You can begin to teach them how to plan and manage a project, but don't do it for them.  In all of this, teach them how to seek the will of God and how to be led by God.  God is always the real creator.  
  • Correction: Grandparents are a support for the parents.  Do not cross the parent's correction.  Follow the parent's rules and the parent's limits.  You can only correct as your correction has been sanctioned by the parents.  Always remember that you are helping in another household beyond your own household.  There is a God-given sanctity in each household.  Do not violate the sanctity of your son's or daughter's household by working against the will of the parent.  (Don't give advice to the parents unless you are asked.  If you are asked, go ahead and offer your advice, but stop if you see that they are shutting down.) When you do discipline, whether by word or some punishment, always let your grandchild know that you love them after the discipline is complete.  Pick them up and hug them.  Give them a gentle squeeze.  Let them get used to your affection in all situations so that you can reinforce your love for them after discipline.  Never discipline in anger.  
  • Security: Help your grandchildren to trust God early in life.  Never stop giving the example of praying about problems and believing for solutions from God.  Be an example of faith and trust.  Show your grandchildren a love that cannot be questioned.  Use touch to assure your grandchildren of your unconditional love for them.  There is very little that you can do to show your love for them more effectively than by listening to them.  Tell your grandchildren that you love them.  Always show self-control.  When you lose control, you rob your grandchildren of God's security.  

Last updated: Sep, 2011
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