July 14, 2021

Wise Grandparenting (Part Five of Five)

Written by Wisdom Hunters

“The more we can build a culture of understanding and empathy the more trust grows.”

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – July 14, 2021

by Guest Writer Bill Ibsen

For this cause a man shall LEAVE his father and his mother, and shall CLEAVE to his wife; and they shall become one fleshGenesis 2:24

My very good friend Bill Ibsen and I have followed Jesus together for over 16 years. We have been in an intimate community group with our wives for 11 years and traveled to Israel and India with our 16-year-old daughters. In addition, we have enjoyed a book club studying classics over the past 7 years. I love and admire Bill for his love for the Lord and his family. For the next five weeks, Wisdom Hunters is blessed to share Bill’s wisdom on grandparenting as he and Alison enjoy the company of five grandbabies! Here’s the fifth of five devotionals on grandparenting:

Loving grandchildren well involves healthy boundaries for Grandparents!

Give Adult Children Respectful Attention

“Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves” (Romans 12:10).

Always acknowledge my child and their spouse quickly after greeting my grandkids. Give attention to them so that they are assured that my relationship with them is also important (i.e. avoid communicating that my son/daughter and their spouse are merely utilitarian conduits to my grandkids). The more we can build a culture of understanding and empathy the more trust grows.

Encourage, Encourage, Encourage

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing” (1 Thessalonians 5:11).

Seek and find and verbalize the many good things my kids are doing as parents and spouses. Affirm, validate, and encourage them, just as I wished someone would have done so for me during those difficult, stretching years! A good parent shouldn’t be a critic; but a good grandparent must be an encourager! Never follow an encouraging statement with a “but”… i.e. “You’re so patient with Jimmy, BUT you should/shouldn’t….” Freely give affirmations!

Disciplining Grandchildren

“Because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in” (Proverbs 3:12).

When grandkids are disobedient, disrespectful, or dishonest, how we as grandparents are instructed by their parents to handle the matter is the parent’s sole decision. That being said, it is primarily the parent’s job to work with the child to get them to behave for the grandparents (or babysitters, for that matter). If they don’t behave, we reserve the right to return the grandchild to the parents so that they deal with the disciplinary issues. Grandparents reserve veto rights to not take kids who refuse to behave. Discipline is the role of the parents, supported by the grandparents.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, give me loving patience to trust my children to discipline their children, through Christ’s love and in Jesus’ name, amen.


Application

How can I make my child feel supported by me in how they discipline their child? 


Related Reading

Genesis 15:15; Psalm 92:14; Isaiah 46:4; Hebrews 12:5-7


Worship Resource

We the Kingdom- Child of Love


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