Saturday, August 31, 2019

Look for How God is in Action & Tell the Stories

As I wrote in the previous post, we need to look for God; for the wonderful things He is doing in our lives and in the lives of the ones we love. Then, as Joani says in this quote, we must not forget to tell the stories of what He is doing in our lives. This is what it means to hand down the faith and it is something we absolutely are able to do.

Life is Wonderful - Don't Miss It

There are many ways life is wonderful - some are big and very obvious. Some may be small, not so obvious, but still wonderful none the less. Regardless of if your life is wonderful in a big, small or somewhere in-between way right now, do your best not to miss it. Watch for what God is doing; for the ways He is working in your life. Record what He is doing. Tell the ones you love.

Friday, August 30, 2019

Redeem the Days

One year ago I wrote this post. Since many of you were not reading Grandmas with Heart then, I thought I'd share it again with you today - the message and point apply today as well.

We grandmas (and grandpas, too) know something our adult children do not . . . we know how quickly children grow up. Our grandchildren are growing up - very quickly. Take time today to ask God to protect their hearts and minds and pray for them to grow to be people who love and walk with God. Make it a point this week to share with them what you do to love and walk with God.

Live the Unique Life God Gave You

This quote from Fred Rogers (Mr. Rogers) is true for our grandchildren; and for us. As our grandchildren begin a new year of school, with new "chances/opportunities", be sure to take the time to encourage them to live the life God has given them and to bring their own wonderful, "uniqueness" to each opportunity the have in the coming year. Encourage them with the truth they do not have to be "perfect" - as none of us are - but they are able to live in a redeeming way which points others to Jesus and displays what it looks like to live life in a way which celebrates all the wonderful, unique things God put in them when He created them.

Get Your Free Digital Copy of Generations Quest Cultivate the Faith

September 8th, is National Grandparents Day - and it is also the National Grandparents Day of Prayer and to celebrate I am making a book available for you to receive the Kindle copy for free. With the grandchildren heading back to school, they are likely to be busy and not be spending as much time with us as they may have over the summer. So, the time we do spend with them needs to be especially purposeful. If you are looking for a resource to help you with this, take a look at Generations Quest - Cultivate the Faith!

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Take Heart - God's Power is Available to You

What is on your heart today? What is the thing about which you continue to think and pray? Is someone you love far from God? Are you concerned your grandchildren are losing interest in walking with God? As they grow older have they told you - as a friend told me her grandson told her - they are, "not into that God thing so much any more"? Is someone you love struggling with the return to school? Does your heart ache because your grandchildren live far from you? What is on your heart?

Take heart! As Joyce Meyer said; "The power of God is available to you today to help you do whatever you need to do; and with a smile on your face!"

Keep Your Eyes & Focus Clear

I have personally been blessed to see as God answered some really big prayer requests in the past month; perhaps you have been able to see this with answers to your prayers as well. Recalling how God has answered prayers and thanking Him for doing so, is a terrific way to start any time of prayer.

It is also a great way to help us keep our eyes and focus clear - God is far bigger than we think He is and He is able and willing to do every so much more than we are even able to begin to imagine!

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Be Faithful & Trust

At my church I head up our Generations@Prayer Group. In this group parents and grandparents share prayer requests and pray through the Psalms for the ones we love. We are using the book I wrote - Praying Deeper Through the Psalms for Grandparents & Parents, Too and each week we pray the same passage in Psalms - but in our own homes, during our own prayer time. Our group is growing as more parents and grandparents learn they are able to be part of our group by praying with us through the Psalms, but in their own homes and during the time they are already praying.

Seven Ideas for Showing Our Love

As grandmas, (and grandpas, too) we certainly want everything we do and say to cause our grandchildren to "feel" our love. But, how do we do this - especially when they may not live where we see them in person every day? Consider the following . . . 

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

What is Love? Love is Shown!

What is love, really? It is more than a "feeling", it is an "action". "God so loved the world that He gave"! (John 3:16) This is what love is, really. It is grace in action. God loved us enough to give us grace . . . He forgave us! He is our Example. 

And, He is our Example. He is Who we need to emulate. We need to remember grace when our grandchildren do something wrong - as all children, no matter how sweet and adorable and wonderful they may be. So, what does this look like? Well . . .

Do Not Be Afraid!

Of what are you afraid? Well, if you are like me, the first thing you think of is spiders. I do not like those hideous creatures at all. In fact, I firmly believe the only good spider is a completely dead spider. One of my "grandma rules" which is most important to keep is; "Kill all spiders until they are dead, then kill them again." 

A few weeks ago I was in my kitchen working when my grandsons were over; I saw a spider and screamed. All three of the boys ran for the kitchen saying; "Where is it? I want to see it!!!" They didn't even have to ask what was happening or why I screamed. They knew. And just so you know, there is no such thing as a "small" spider! 

Monday, August 26, 2019

My Top Five Reasons I Listen to My Grandsons

I remember a few years back a day when my grandsons were at my house watching a children's show and the topic of not being listened to came up (it was the "title" of the episode). I asked my oldest grandson if he felt this way sometimes and he said; "Yes. Well, except for you, grandma, because you always listen to us." 

As adults it is far too easy to be busy with the things we are doing or with our tech and just not listen to children. Children do tend to talk a lot and it is not always "earth-shattering" things they have to say; but when it comes to my grandsons, I feel like if it is important to them and they want to tell me about something, then I want to hear it! I'm so glad they have noticed this!

So, as I thought about this conversation, I came up with five reasons I listen to my grandsons and today I'm sharing them with you. They are . . . 

God's Word is the Key

As Christian grandparents and parents we may look at the world around us and wonder how we are ever going to be able to hand down a heritage of faith when so many things which appeal to the children we love push them away from God. But, we do not have to be discouraged. We truly are able to be successful when it comes to handing down our faith. The “key” for helping the children we love grow to walk faithfully with God is found in God’s Word. Look at what we know to be true about God’s Word . . .

Sunday, August 25, 2019

It Just Takes a Few, Simple Words

One time, a couple years ago, when my grandsons were at my house, my then six-year-old grandson were talking when I told him something which had a huge impact on him. I looked at him and said; “Do you know why I know God loves me?

He looked at me and said; "Because of Heaven."

I smiled at him and responded; "Yes, being able to one day go to Heaven is one way I know God loves me, but do you know another reason I know He loves me?"

He thought for a moment and shook his head.

I smiled, looked into his twinkly, blue eyes and said; “Because He gave you to me!

Prayer for the Start of the New School Year

For the LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding” (Proverbs 2:6).

Heavenly Father,

Today, we pray for our grandchildren as they transition to a new school year. Let them be courteous, cooperative and respectful of their teachers and classmates as they take part in classroom activities and discussions.

What I Want My Grandsons to Remember

With each passing day, we get older - yes, this is a no-brainer, but as we grow older, we may wonder; "What will our grandchildren remember about me?" and more importantly; "What do I want my grandchildren to remember about me?"

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Remember and Enjoy the Blessings

While there are many, "perks", many blessings to being a grandma (or grandpa), one is certainly being able to hear as the grandchildren say those precious - and often funny - sweet things. The things you want to remember always (which, by the way, is the purpose for the "on this day" feature on facebook). I have many of these "perks", these blessings as my grandsons have said many precious, funny, sweet things over the years. I was recently reminded of one such thing my then three year old grandson said one time when he was at my house. He had something extremely important to tell me. He said; "I am allergic to magic beans."

Finding this interesting, surprising and quite funny, I asked him why he thought he was allergic to them. He said; "They make me grow, grow, grow all the way to space and I hate them!"

Apparently he had been listening to the story, Jack and the Beanstalk. Of course, since I prepare food for him when he is at my house, this was important information for me to know. I am able to assure you, magic beans have not been on this grandma's menu!

I am sure you have wonderful, precious, sweet things your dear grandchildren have said; memories which continue to bring a smile to your face as well. Consider doing the following with them . . .

Our Top Five Reasons for Being There

I have friends who only let their grandchildren spend time at their homes once or twice a month. They say they think it was "wise" to set "limits", so their own children do not take advantage of them when it comes to taking care of their grandchildren. They said this "freed them up" to be able to enjoy their retirement.

I love my friends, but think they have completely missed what wisdom is when it comes to their grandchildren and grown children. I am happy to spend time with my grandchildren; as often as possible. My grandsons have at least one sleepover at my house each week - I am very blessed indeed!

So, why do I believe it is real wisdom to spend as much time with my grandchildren as possible? Consider the following . . .

Friday, August 23, 2019

God's Never-Ending, Faithful Love

This chapter in the Bible is one of my favorites - Psalms 100 is all about knowing how amazing God is, praising Him for the incredible things He has done and how they show His never-ending, faithful love for us - and this is my favorite part - and for all generations!

I know God loves me - I have been able to see and experience His never-ending, faithful love in so many ways over the years. I know He loves me. These verses affirm God's never-ending, faithful love for me and assures and encourages me this same love is for my children, grandchildren and all the generations who follow!

Positive Impressions

If your grandchildren have been surrounded with loving, grace-filled, caring adults who have modeled to them what it looks like to love others and who have loved them, then the impressions which have, "fallen" on them are those which leave positive impressions - the kind of impressions we want to be made on them.

If, however; your grandchildren have experienced difficult situations, have been harmed by people who should have loved them, have experienced bullying or other types of trauma, then the impressions which have, "fallen" on them are those which leave negative impressions.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Don't Give Up Your Influence

As your grandchildren return to school, it is true they will be influenced again by many people - some of which may influence them in positive ways and others who do not. But, regardless of the time they spend in school and around their friends, like Wayne says, we grandparents are still in a prime position to inspire and instill faith in our grandchildren, because we do have an immense amount of love for them.

Do not think you are unable to influence and inspire your grandchildren toward a solid walk with God, because the truth is, you absolutely are -

Give Them Something Great to Imitate

This quote is so true - children - especially when they are young - do imitate us. They often walk like us, talk like us, smile like us, laugh like us, even have a sense of humor like ours . . . they are always watching, always listening and they get their "cues" for how to live by watching us. This is true for older grandchildren as well.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Lamentations 3:21-23 - A Prayer & A Blessing

With the new school year upon us, I want to share this verse along with a challenge for us all. It is all too easy for us to become busy with the day-in-day-out living of our lives and forget things we want to do to hand down the faith. So, to help you remember, consider getting some supplies and have your grandchildren help you make this prayer into a design to hang near your table to remind you to make it your daily prayer. Learn the blessing and make small copies of it for your grandchildren to keep in their room near their beds. When you all see it, you will be reminded of the truth in these verses.

Hope, yes we are able to have hope, because God's love, mercy and faithfulness never end and this is something for us to remember. Take time today to notice how God shows these three things to you and tell your grandchildren all about it! Help them learn to watch for how God shows His love, mercy and faithfulness to them as well - so they are able to live with hope.

Consider accepting my challenge and post this verse in your home as well as make it a part of what you pray daily for your children and grandchildren - 

God is at Work

I love this quote from Cavin Harper - it is absolutely true. God has given us a job to do - we are to hand down the faith. We do this by . . . 
  • Remembering and telling about the things He has done in our lives. 
  • We are to pray faithfully for the children and grandchildren He has given to us. 
  • We are to speak the truth and tell them who God is and why they are able to believe in and trust Him. 
These are the things we are to do as we hand down the faith to the generations who come behind us.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

It All Matters

You may think you do not influence your grandchildren very much, but the truth is, you do. Grandparents are the second most influential people in the lives of their grandchildren, so it matters what we say and do to and with our grandchildren.

Don't Forget - Be Sure to Tell

Think back over your life to the times when you have trusted and waited for God . . . did He not always do as He said? Did He not bless you with His peace and treat you with compassion?

Monday, August 19, 2019

God's Fingerprints are on His Most Amazing Creations

I mentioned this post yesterday and originally wrote it just a few months ago, but with our grandchildren returning to school I wanted to share it again with you - in case you did not see it. Even if you did, please read it again, take time (in person or through tech) to connect with your grandchildren and praise God together for His amazing creation - be sure to tell them about the Carrier Crab and Fire Urchin to help equip them with the truth and some of the "whys" as they return to school. 

This is a Carrier Crab (look under the Fire Urchin in the photo below) - it lives in the Pacific Ocean. Apparently it is considered HIGHLY tasty to pretty much all its neighbors. So, to survive it uses its back legs to hold the Fire Urchin (by the way, did I mention the Fire Urchin is named "Fire Urchin" for an excellent reason . . . it is poisonous to all those hungry neighbors) and carries it around wherever it goes. When the Carrier Crab's hungry neighbors see the tasty crab, AND the poisonous Fire Urchin, they decide they are not as hungry as they thought they were - they leave the crab alone.

Prayer for Our Grandchildren to Show Love to Others

As across the country children are back in school or head back to school over the coming couple weeks, let's pray for our grandchildren to be people who serve others with love. If they are focused upon loving God and others with their all, they will not have trouble obeying their teachers and getting along with others. Consider making Galatians 5:13, 14 part of what you pray for them . . . 

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Be Prepared

Last week I wrote about why it is so important, so essential for us to teach God's Word to our grandchildren, so they are able to build their lives upon a firm foundation, but we must not stop there. We must also teach them the "whys" of what we believe and the "whys" when it comes to believing what God's Word says. (You will find this post at the following link.)

Today I want to write a bit more about why it matters so much for us to teach our grandchildren the "whys". At some point in their lives - and not necessarily when they are teens and young adults - could be when they are younger - even much younger - someone is going to sow a seed of doubt in their minds about if the Bible is true, God is real and if it matters and makes sense for them to believe and live their lives based on what the Bible says. This will happen. You are able to count upon it.

Books & Resources From the Grandmas with Heart - and a Request for Help

One of the things we Grandmas with Heart want to do is to provide tools - books and resources - which will equip you to grow in your walk with God and hand down the faith to your children and grandchildren. While there are a few books out there for grandparents, most of them are written by grandpas - which is great as they have much to offer, but so do grandmas. Today I want to let you know about some resources written by some of the Grandmas with Heart and where you will find them.

Prayer for Long-Distance Grandparenting

Abba Father,
We pray You bless our relationship with our long-distance grandchildren. Please bridge the miles between us by strengthening the bonds we share with them. Help us discover fun and creative ways to participate in their young lives. Create opportunities for us to bless them, and remind us to pray for them by name everyday. Show us how to leave a written or recorded spiritual legacy and other such “stones of remembrance” (Joshua 4:1-7) for them to enjoy.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Take heart. Continue to pray. Don't give up.

Today I want to encourage you with the truth of how just because we are not able to see how God is answering our prayers, it does not mean He is not answering them. As Beth Moore says; "Where God is concerned, silence never equals slumber."

Keep & Share a True View of God

The news for the past several months has covered shootings, riots, threats of recession and more. These events are frightening, leave us feeling helpless and may leave our grandchildren wondering where God is and why these things are happening. They are an opportunity for us to show, not just tell, but show our grandchildren what it means for us to trust God; particularly during difficult and confusing times.

Friday, August 16, 2019

It is the Time for Us to Do What Matters

If we have grandchildren, then it is clear God wants us to hand down the faith to them. We do not have to wonder about what God wants us to do; we are able to clearly know. So, this means there are many decisions in our lives which are very easy to make. For example; if a decision before us would provide the opportunity for us to hand down the faith, then we do it. See, easy!

Sources of Wisdom & Security

As grandparents we have the wonderful opportunity to do things with our grandchildren which they will remember throughout their lives - we are able to be the people who teach them to cook, fish, how to throw a water balloon, how to play chess and tell the very best, funniest jokes. All important things, for sure. But we are also able to be the people they will remember for how we made them feel secure and loved and for how they were always able to turn to us with questions or concerns and know we would give them wise answers, pray with them and help them find the answers if we did not know them. 

Thursday, August 15, 2019

It's Our Job to Obey What God Has Decided

As grandmas it is our "job" to pray and hand down the faith - we know this and it is our joy to do so. It is also our "job" to love our grandchildren - and certainly we fell in love with them the very first time we saw and held them. Loving our grandchildren is the easiest "job" we will ever have.

We are happy to pray, hand down the faith and love our grandchildren, and know at least the basics of what these things involve, but today I want to think about a time when it may be possible we will also have to speak up for our grandchildren.

Lay the Foundation AND Teach the "Whys" - It Matters

I have been reading about leaders in the church around the world who are renouncing their faith - seems like this is something which is happening more often these days. And not just leaders in the church around the world, but many of us have children, grandchildren, siblings who have turned from a walk with God. What is happening?

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Hand Down the Faith with Mystery Bags - God is Able to do Infinitely More than We Ask or Think

As our grandchildren return to school for another year of learning, another year of getting along with others, another year of growing, it is important for us to remind them no matter what they face - both in the blessings and the challenges which are before them - God is able to do infinitely more than they will ask for, think of or need. One fun way to do this is with a simple bar of Ivory soap and a microwave. For this Mystery Bag project you will need . . .

A Grandma Loves Forever & Shows It

I do not know who first said this quote, but it is certainly something we all have thought - we will hold these little ones for a short time, but while we know they will grow too big for laps, they will never outgrow our love. We remember how it felt to be the mom - there were times when we wondered if the diapers, late night feedings, toilet training, etc. would ever end, but as the grandmas we know the years actually just flew by and before we knew it our children were grown.

As these children we love grow up and head for life as adults, there are things we are able to do which will stay with them forever. When we take time to show love; they will remember, so what are some of the best ways to show love? Consider the following . . .

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Be the Link in the Chain which Connects the Past with the Future

We grandmas and grandpas certainly have the best "job" ever. We get to snuggle our grandchildren when they are little, read books, play games, enjoy taking them places, do science experiments together, teach them to cook, use tools, and be their biggest cheerleaders. We get to hand down the faith and teach them about God, Jesus, the Bible and how to talk with them. Oh yes, without a doubt, we have the best job ever!

Point to God's Most Amazing Love

My grandsons know their poppa and I think about them every day whether they are at our house or not. We want them to know we love them, think about and pray for them every day, but more importantly we have been focused upon also being certain they know as much as we think about them, God thinks about, and loves, them even more.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Do Not Give Up No Matter What

Many of our grandchildren have a full, new year of school ahead of them. Throughout this year they will learn many things; some which are true and some which are not. While we are not able to stop them from hearing things at school or from friends which are not true, we are able to teach and model the truth to them, so they are able to stand firmly grounded in the truth throughout their lives.

Help Your Grandchildren Develop a Focus for Their New School Year

We are just a couple weeks from the start of school for my grandsons - and this year all three of them will be in new schools in a new town as their parents just bought a new house. It is an exciting - and busy time for sure! We are taking the focus for our Summer and continuing it as our focus for the Fall - loving God and others with our all, finding our strength in His joy and knowing His perfect peace.

Whether your grandchildren are moving and/or starting school this Fall in a new school or not, these three things upon which to focus will help them with every aspect of the school year before them. Consider the following . . .

Sunday, August 11, 2019

This is What it is All About

I am very blessed to have my grandsons over for a sleepover pretty much every Friday or Saturday. The boys were here last night for a Saturday night sleepover and today I'm remembering a sleepover from last year. On this particular evening there was a bonfire at our house. The boys enjoyed roasting marshmallows and chatted with the people who were here. At one point they were talking about believing in Jesus and my grandsons said; "We believe in Jesus. Our grandma told us about Him and she never lies."

Equip Your Grandchildren with the Truth as They Return to School

As our grandchildren prepare to return to another year of school, take time to equip them with the tools they need to believe and act upon the truth of how they are not insignificant, and neither are any of the other children at school. We all know how school has the potential to expose the children we love to others who tear them down - both other children and in some cases, teachers. Equip them with the truth - God knew what He was doing when He created them and He did not make any mistakes. He made them with a purpose in mind, they matter, they have significance and there is no other person just like them in the world. They are loved and they matter.

Prayer for Parents Preparing for the Upcoming School Year

Heavenly Father,
Our grandchildren’s parents are busily preparing for a new school year, purchasing clothes and last-minute school supplies, arranging carpool and planning lunches. Some breathe a sigh of relief, thankful routine will soon return to their homes. Others wipe away tears, as their children, our grandchildren, take another step toward independence.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

The Greatest "Returns" Now & For Generations to Come

I love this quote - it is absolutely true. There are so many reasons for us to invest our time in the grandchildren God has given to us, but knowing time spent while they are young is able to help them grow up feeling loved and wanted and help them learn to make wise choices as they learn how to experience the joy of knowing and walking with God is certainly at the top of the list. God 's best plan for handing down the faith is for the grandparents and parents to be the people who hand down the faith - yes, this is God's best plan! There are many reasons for this, but one is certainly for how when we do, we help these children grow up feeling the security and joy of knowing they are loved by us and by Him.

Trust God with Our Grandchildren

The first time our grandchildren are placed into our arms, we know we will love them forever. We hold them tight and with each grandchild, we are completely convinced we are holding the most adorable grandchild ever!

Friday, August 9, 2019

"Dangerous, Expectation-Wrecking, Smile-Creating" Grace

As our grandchildren grow up and live their lives they will run into people who extend grace to them; and those who do not. But, as their grandmas (and grandpas/parents, too) we have the wonderful opportunity to be the person who they think of when they think of the word "grace", by the way we live, the things we do and say and by how we are lavish in the way we show grace to them.

The Best Parts of Growing Older

I have been noticing lately how my grandsons are definitely growing older - they are getting taller, they are making wiser choices, they are learning so many things. Truly time does pass quickly and, like it or not, just as our grandchildren are growing older, so are we. But there are many blessings which come with growing older; and certainly one of them is the blessing of knowing and handing faith to our grandchildren. While we certainly need to be focused and purposeful about doing this, we also need to be sure we take time to watch for how God answers our prayers and how our grandchildren are learning to grow in their own walk with God.

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Welcome to "Grandmas with Heart"!

Welcome to "Grandmas with Heart"! We (Linda Ranson Jacobs, Debbie Guinn, Joani Schultz, Sherry Schumann, Nohemi Murray, Cathy Ja...