God’s Word to Grandparents

On November 10, 2008 our oldest son, Josh, and his wife, Becca, made us grandparents for the first time.

We are so thankful for Grant William.  He is truly our miracle baby, as you know, if you have been reading Becca’s blog about her walk through infertility for two years.

Now I know that I am inexperienced at being a grandparent, but God’s word has some specific instructions to grandparents that I wanted to share.

Deut. 4:9 (NLT)
“But watch out! Be very careful never to forget what you have seen the Lord do for you. Do not let these things escape from your mind as long as you live! And be sure to pass them on to your children and grandchildren.

Timothy’s grandmother was an example of this to us.  She passed her faith on to her grandson.

2 Tim. 1:5 (NLT)
I know that you sincerely trust the Lord, for you have the faith of your mother, Eunice, and your grandmother, Lois.

Even though our children are grown, God says that we still have work to do concerning our grandchildren.  What a responsibility and a wonderful privilege!!!  What fun we are going to have helping our children teach their children about Jesus!!!!!

Psalm 71:18 (NLT)  Now that I am old and gray, do not abandon me, O God, Let me proclaim your power to this new generation your mighty miracles to all who come after me.

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Teaching Patience

Patience is “waiting until later for what I want now”. God is our perfect example of this as He wants our love and affection now, but He waits patiently until we are ready to yield to Him:

And remember, the Lord is waiting so that people have time to be saved…2 Peter 3:15

Don’t you realize how kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Or don’t you care? Can’t you see how kind he has been in giving you time to turn from your sin? Romans 2:4

If God has such patience with us, we should have patience with each other:

Be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Ephesians 4:2

As parents, our patience is tested daily and there are times when we all think we have totally lost it. This is when we need to rest in the fact that through knowing God and by His power, we can endure anything:

We also pray that you will be strengthened with his glorious power so that you will have all the patience and endurance you need…Col. 1:11

Knowing God leads to self-control. Self-control leads to patient endurance, and patient endurance leads to godliness. 2 Peter 1:6

One way our children learn patience is from observing us. They will usually respond to a situation the same way we do, so they need to see us exercising our patience in difficult situations. When we lose our patience, it can be make the situation worse; when we are patient, we have a calming effect on our children.

Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might show forth all longsuffering (patience), for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him. 1 Tim. 1:16

In addition to your modeling patience, you can have fun using creative activities to teach patience. Here are some ideas I have used through the years with my own children and with my two year old class this last month:

1. Our theme song for the month has been from a children’s musical called Music Machine (click to see this album available at Amazon.com). To hear the song about patience click here 07-have-patience1.

2. In this song Herbert the Snail sings “Have Patience”. We had fun making a snail out of clay dough and painting it after it dried. To make the clay-dough, mix 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup salt, and 1/3 cup water. Roll the dough into a snake and curl it like a snail. Use a broken toothpick for feelers.

Herbert the Snail

3. We also learned to sign the song.


4. I had the children all sit down on the carpet and wait quietly until the timer went off (about one minute or so) and then I gave them a small treat and thanked them for waiting patiently.

5. We pointed out patience in any video we watched or book we read.

6. When we read The Tortoise and the Hare, we made a turtle out of a paper plate folded in half for its shell and then added a head, legs, and tail. We talked about how the turtle walked patiently toward his goal.

7. When we read Daddy, Are We There Yet, we pretended to take a car trip and talked about waiting patiently until we arrived at our destination.

8. I thanked them anytime I observed them using patience.

9. I acted out being impatient, which really surprised them to see me act like they do sometimes when they don’t get what they want and when they want it. 😛 ( I later apologized for not being patient)

I’m sure you can come up with more creative ideas of your own. Have fun and remember that with God’s power you can “Have Patience” 😉

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Prenatal Care

What a mother-to-be eats during pregnancy feeds the child physically.  It is necessary for the baby’s normal, healthy physical development.  In the same way, what the mother takes into her spirit feeds the baby’s spirit.  Andrew Murray, in his book, How to Raise Your Children for Christ
, points out that in that holy time of mystery, when mother and child are still one, and influences from a mother’s spirit pass into the child, God says that the mother is to obey all that He commands.
(Judges 13:14)  God wants the mother obeying His Word and thus feeding the child’s spirit with scripture.

It is interesting that there are 9 Fruit of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22-23 and there are 9 months of pregnancy.  Take one Fruit each month of pregnancy to study, pray, and meditate on.  I did this with my 4 pregnancies and now I am praying with my daughter-in-law as she is praying the Fruit of the Spirit into her first child due in November (Grant William at 20 weeks pictured above).

Listed below are my notes from studying and meditating on the Fruit of the Spirit when I was pregnant.

 

1. Love – giving to others’ basic needs without having as my motive any personal reward

John 17:26 And I have declared to them Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”

2. Joy – the exultation of my inward being that results from genuine harmony with God and others

John 17:13 But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.

3. Peace – harmony with God, others, and self

Philip. 4:7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

4. Longsuffering – patience, endurance, inward strength to withstand stress

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count

slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

5. Gentleness – expressing personal care appropriate to another’s emotional need

Titus 3:2 to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men.

6. Goodness – righteousness, loving-kindness

Romans 11:22 Therefore consider the goodness and severity of God: on those who fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in His goodness. Otherwise you also will be cut off.

7. Faith – visualizing what God intends to do in a given situation and acting in harmony with it

Mark 11:22 So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God.

8. Meekness – controlled, humble, yielding my personal rights and expectations to God

1 Peter 3:4 rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a meek and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.

9. Temperance – self control, mastering one’s desires and passions, instant obedience to the initial promptings of God’s Spirit

1 Cor. 9:27 But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.

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Teaching Respect

It is never too early nor too late to begin teaching character to your children.

Steve McChesney has a great article about teaching children the character quality of respect.  It can be found at here.

I just spent a month teaching my two-year-old class about respect.  We used the word often when  correcting unacceptable behavior and we looked for examples of respect or lack of respect in any books we read.

I took Aretha Franklin’s song  “R-E-S-P-E-C-T” and changed the words (see below).  The children loved it and have really responded well to the teaching.  They have grasped the concept of respect as showing kindness and they use the term appropriately, plus they have learned to spell the word.  And they are only two years old!! You can see the video below:

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

R-E-S-P-E-C-T spells respect it’s plain to see.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T means I’m kind to you; you’re kind to me.

Show

Respect to your mom

Respect to your dad

Respect to your friends

Respect for their things

Respect to your teachers

Respect for your school

R-E-S-P-E-C-T  This is what it means to me!! (clapping as you say this)

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God never lets go of us!

Anyone can smile and sing when things are going great.  The true test of my faith is to smile and sing when I am in the midst of a trial in my life.

It brings a smile to God’s heart when we express  trust in Him even when our circumstances seem contrary to what we have always believed about Him.  It encourages ourselves and others when we declare our love for God and confidence in Him during these times.  The attached song by Matt Redman sums this up.

Help your children grasp early in life the fact that no matter what comes our way, God never lets go of us!!!!

08-you-never-let-go

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