by Don Williams
“They” call me Poppa: a creative, conscientious boy of six who just graduated from kindergarten, an energetic girl of four who is all heart, and a sweet baby girl who started walking at ten months, trying to keep up with her brother and sister.
These three gifts from God have opened up a whole new world for me, making me want to do crazy, silly things I never thought of doing with my own boys. I have learned that carrying pictures of my grandchildren is a must, even if I forget to have pictures of the rest of my family!
Having my grandkids around makes me want to be a better man—because I know for sure they are watching. When I was asked to write this article, I thought of three things a GRAND Granddad should give to his grandchildren.
He Should Give Them MEMORIES
- Being on the porch waiting when they arrive from their long, five-hour drive.
- Taking them on a fun adventure riding on top of an old lawnmower.
- Telling them a bedtime story about a wounded animal and a statue—even if it has to be over the phone from 300 miles away!
- Making sure you are at their special school events and birthdays—even if means driving that 600 mile round-trip in less than 24 hours!
He Should Give Them GOD
- Teaching them the words complete with all the motions to the songs, “My God Is So Big! and “12 Spies Went Down To Canaan!”
- Letting THEM pray at mealtimes while we all hold hands at the table.
- Giving them a dollar and watching them proudly drop it into the basket.
- Telling them stories of God’s creation (Psa. 19:1-2), showing them how great this God is that you want them to follow and love.
He Should Give Them BOUNDARIES
- Making them apologize to one another if they hurt each other’s feelings.
- Teaching them to take turns when we play a game—especially showing them how to act when they lose the game!
- Being serious with them when a “teachable” moment occurs.
Being a Granddad gives me a chance to “do over” what I tried to do with my own two boys. My family knows I am proud I am of all of them, but the truth is, none of us would be where we are today if it were not for another set of Grandparents who came before us, instilling in us these same important values. And the wheel keeps on turning.
Paul informs us that Timothy had a genuine faith, thanks to the pattern of faith demonstrated in his grandmother, Lois, and his mother, Eunice (2 Tim. 1:5). I want to be around my grandchildren and I want to be a part of their lives, so I can share with them the faith that was handed down to me by my parents.
Hopefully, at this point in my life, I have more time, perhaps a little more wisdom & for sure, a whole lot more experience & patience. May God bless us all, as we seek to instill “Generational Christianity” in the lives of those we love so much! One thing my grandkids know for sure, “Their Poppa loves them “Bigger! ” and “He Always Will!”