Abundant ParentingSeries: The Abundant Life
Abundant PARENTING…And Grandparenting
I know many in our congregation have already raised children, so what is going to be said this morning could seem like it’s “for the younger generation.” However, I want to make an observation. Abby and I have long felt that the current “grandparent generation” (ages 45-50+) is the first of its kind. You are likely far more involved in your grandchildren’s lives than your parents were, and probably far more involved than you even planned to be. Because of the shift in economics in our country over the last several decades, both parents are often needed to work outside the home, which puts an added strain on figuring out childcare and child raising. Often, the solution for families is to turn to grandparents. Grandparents often become co-parents with their children, helping raise their grandkids. I’m sure for many of you, this isn’t the idea you had in mind when you thought of becoming a grandparent—instead of taking them to and from school, feeding them lunch/dinner, and taking them to sports practices, you had planned on having fun sleepovers on Friday or Saturday nights, taking them to a movie or on a trip, then sending them back to mom and dad’s. For better or for worse, this has not been the case for many in the current grandparenting generation.
So, as grandparents, you may function more like parents than you want to admit. That’s why I think this morning’s sermon is for everyone. Whether you want to or not, you are involved in your grandchild’s development in a deep way. Although we may mourn the loss of “grandparenting” as we previously knew it, the new way of interacting with grandchildren has such a valuable component to it. You can be far more influential in your grandchildren’s lives.
So, if I just described you, I hope you take on your new role with enthusiasm and hope—you can (and are) making a difference in your grandchild’s life! And, to the parents, make sure you thank your parents for their help if they are involved in the ways I described above. They already put in their time, but they are going in for another round. They need to be appreciated for this!