Martha & Greg Singleton

Martha & Greg Singleton

FAMTALKS

Setting Up Stones: The Next Generation

Providing unlimited sugar intake, extending bedtimes, and making unhurried trips to museums, parks and zoos are the standard perks of being a grandparent. We get to relive the wonderful moments of playtime, laughter and snuggles, without the responsibility for table manners, dental check-ups and homework charts.

But as Greg and I kept our grandsons over this past weekend, thoroughly delighting in each moment of Hex Bugs and Legos with the six-year-old and splashy baths and car-rolling with the one-year-old, I realized that there is one very serious responsibility I do bear in those boys’ lives.

Without preaching, without pressure, without expectations that lead to judgment, I must do my part to introduce and encourage them to develop their own relationships with Jesus!

Obviously, I make it a point to pray for them day by day.

Hopefully, I live before them in a way that demonstrates mercy, grace, and love, and that gives credence to my profession of faith.

But there is more!

In our book, Setting Up Stones: A Parent’s Guide to Making Your Home a Place of Worship, Greg and I encourage parents to purposefully plan activities, start conversations, and seek opportunities that would engage their children’s interest in knowing God.

Rather than lining the kids up at the table and reading or preaching to them, we suggest all kinds of projects and activities and conversation prompts that would have children of all ages asking questions, and eager to hear more.

Simple things, like collecting leaves or rocks on a walk, and talking about the wonderful variety found in God’s creation,  or using a game of hop scotch or horse to learn Bible verses about being kind, can open hearts and minds to the truth that we are loved and called by God.

Working together to assemble bags for the homeless, or to make cookies for a lonely neighbor can help develop an awareness of God’s call for us to love those who may be forgotten.

For some, the ideas will be popping about now. For others, reading our book could give you some simple, practical ideas of how to make this happen.

Either way, being a grandparent offers a great chance to infuse the moments that we spend with our sweet ones with hearts turned toward God, leaving a significant, eternal imprint on their lives.

 

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