I, like almost everyone else, didn’t expect Covid 19 to morph into Covid 21!
I have missed being a normal part of our grandchildren’s lives the last 9 months. When we were able to gather at a few outside events this summer and fall, I missed the hugs that we usually exchanged. For me, not being able to embrace my grandchildren is like telling me that I can’t say “I love you!”
I still send text messages like I did before but recently I felt the Holy Spirit inspiring me to do something more and not to settle for “the less” that has become normal. I sensed that it was important to re-connect with my grandchildren during the pandemic and reassure them of God’s love. I wanted them to know that Jesus desires to answer their prayers. I decided to call two granddaughters to encourage and support them. Like many grandmothers, I wasn’t sure how inserting myself into their busy lives would be received. One granddaughter didn’t usually talk on the phone for more than five minutes. I texted to see if she would be available to talk for a few minutes between her classes that day. She was walking in the arboretum next to her dorm and texted: “Grandma, I would love to talk!” So, I called.
My granddaughter hadn’t met many people on campus because of the restrictions during the pandemic and it was a cause of underlying sadness for her. I could see in my mind the trees and landscape as she pointed out the beautiful fall colors all around her. Throughout our enjoyable conversation, it was as if I was walking beside her and we were talking in person! I loved listening to her and encouraging her in her new adventures. When I asked if she would like me to pray for any special concerns, she happily shared her requests with me. I looked at my watch after we ended the call and it was one hour later and I had an updated list of prayer intentions as well!I am so glad I didn’t just settle for less.
Copyright © 2021 Grandly: The Strategic Grandparents Club.
Grandly: The Strategic Grandparents Club is a program of the Sword of the Spirit. This program was founded in 2016 by Mike Shaughnessy as a resource to equip grandparents to share their faith with their grandchildren. Grandly teaches grandparents to “Think, Pray, and Act Strategically” in the lives of their grandkids. It recognizes that grandparents occupy a special role in the lives of their grandchildren, and if properly trained, can make an outsized impact on their spiritual lives.
As a youth minister, Mike knew the difference grandparents could make in the lives of their grandchildren. He wondered if it could happen more often. It wasn’t that they lacked the faith. What they lacked was a strategy. If grandparents learned how to think, pray, and act strategically, the way youth workers did, something marvelous would happen. It has. Strategic grandparents have become missionaries to their own grandchildren.
We equip grandparents to be “youth workers” to their own grandchildren. When we ask grandparents, “What is your biggest concern?” Most answer “our grandchildren,” not their retirement or the next vacation. Many see that their grandchildren are not getting the spiritual and moral formation they need, and feel equally unable to address that need. We currently equip grandparents to be youth workers through two venues: our website (grandly.org) and our “Do It Grandly” Seminars.
Our website reaches a network of grandparents who are interested in learning how to think, pray, and act strategically. We publish bi-weekly online articles that provide encouragement, motivation, and practical tools on how to pass on their faith to grandchildren. Through our “Do It Grandly” seminars, we help grandparents to grow in their relational skills while providing insight into contemporary youth culture, giving them valuable tools for building impactful, Christ-centered relationships with their grandchildren. These seminars provide a way for Sword of the Spirit grandparents to re-enter internal (their own grandchildren) and external (their own peers) mission
For access to inspirational articles, sign up for a free membership at www.grandly.org.
Top image credit: Grandmother texting a message, from Bigstock.com, © dolgachov, stock photo ID 102616811