I just love the excitement of children when they see something new or different. They simply cannot contain that excitement and don’t really care who is around to hear it.
This past week, I had to stop into a car dealership to pick up a part for my husband. I had my granddaughter Joy with me, so together we walked into the showroom. She could not believe her eyes! “There are cars in here! Pretty cars! It’s a car store!”
The receptionist was an older woman; probably a great grandmother and she just chuckled. She thought Joy’s reaction was priceless. Joy’s excitement was contagious. Yes, there were cars in this store. It was a car store!
We picked up the part and headed toward the door. But Joy wasn’t finished. She asked if she could look at all the cars. So we spent a few moments going around each one. She touched them. She was impressed with how clean they were. How shiny they were. How they sparkled.
How refreshing it is to watch and listen to our young. They repeat words and phrases we say. They mimic our actions. They are watching. Very closely.
So I have to ask myself, “Am I living the life that I want my grandchildren to mimic? Is my vocabulary free of words that I would not want to hear from the mouths of my grandchildren?” Perhaps I’m doing okay, but I know I could be a better example.
I then must ask, “What do I want my children and grandchildren to learn from me? What do I need to do to make sure they have heard my (God’s) message loud and clear?”
I must teach it. Deuteronomy gives us two verses about teaching our children and grandchildren about God. “Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart a long as you live. Teach them to your children and their children after them.” (Deuteronomy 4:9 – NIV)
In regard to teaching about God’s commands, He says, “Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” (Deuteronomy 11:19 – NIV) I have a responsibility as a parent and grandparent to teach them what God has taught me.
I must live it. This one is a hard one. Mainly because these are the people who see me in my relaxed mode. Who observe me when I don’t have to have my “good face” on. Nevertheless, I must live it. I’m commanded to do so.
Colossians 1:10-12 (NIV) has some good words to live by. “And we pray this in order that you may life a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way; bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.” I think there is a good sermon in these few verses! I may need to write these down to read daily! Perhaps even memorize them!
I must pray. Jesus prayed for future believers in John 17:20 (NIV) and we should follow His example in this area. “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message.”
And Romans 12:12 (NIV) says, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” We cannot assume that someone else is going to be praying for our children and grandchildren. We must fall to our knees with diligence and faithfulness.
I must trust. Trust that their lives are in God’s hands and that He will care for them. David knew about this trust. In Psalm 37:5-6 (NIV), he says, “Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.”
He also reminds us in Psalm 62:8 (NIV), “Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.”
We can only do our part, but because we do our part in this, we find assurance in Paul’s words. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13 – NIV) I cannot think of anything else I’d rather have than hope. Hope that God will come through for me and my family.
This wasn’t the only time Joy was excited during our week together, but it was a memorable one. I am thankful that God is able to fill her with this same excitement. Now I just need to wait. Patiently. But that is another blog post for another day!
Grace and peace be yours in abundance,