Are you overwhelmed with too many places togo, to see or to know? A place can be where you work or play, an area of personal contentment, purpose or passion. It can be a location or geography. It can even be in the belly of a great fish where it’s stinky, slimy or sad. No matter what or where you can call out to God like Jonah did, for God is with you wherever you go, whether the place is pleasant or painful. ( See Jonah 2) A place can even be a person. There is a place in my heart that has a passion for my kids and grandkids. Like all grandparents should, I desire that my grandkids would know they are loved, have value and importance, grow up to be kind, respectful and successful members of society.
Winter seems to limit the possibilities of places to go. Really they are boundless and exciting in their own way; sled, build a snowman or ski. Nothing like enjoying the frosty fresh air in your face. There are plenty of ways to entertain and engage. If it’s too icy out, a card game or board game is a hit. When my young ones were little we played Candy Land. (I would sometimes let my grandson win just to see his smile and victory dance!) Now it’s Uno Flip and it’s every man for himself. It’s a great game for a large group and has spiced up the game Uno.
Don’t just keep your young ones busy physically and emotionally, they also must be engaged spiritually. This is necessary for a well rounded and peaceful person. How do you interrupt their lives and phones for this? Here are some ways I have found for my grandson Anthony who is ten. We raised him from age 1-6 where we impacted the formation of his character. We still strive to make a positive difference in his life, no matter what place he is in.
- Listen, with more than your ears. Listen with your eyes, see when to speak and when to hear. Have a calm discussion that stimulates thinking.
- He has been taught evolution in school, be prepared with some answers even if you have to do some research about Dinosaurs and the Earth’s creation. Be confident that he knows he did not come from goo!
- Live the life that others will want to mimic. He sees us go to church, pray and worship. My daughter recently thanked me for taking her to church as a child because in the craziness of this world, she knows Jesus is real and she has hope no matter what gloomy forecast she hears.
- Memorize scripture. Their young minds are learning all the time. Help them to absorb the absolute truth in God’s Word. As Anthony quotes John 3:16 I know he’ll always carry it with him no matter what, and know God loves him.
- Choices make the difference between life and death. Science has proven you are not at the mercy of your genes, or the depression or anger of your ancestors. If you are predisposed to something, evaluate and take control, choose to eliminate the negative emotions. (See Dr. Caroline Leaf’s book, “Switch On Your Brain” p. 57) I have told Anthony, your attitude does not control you, you control your attitude. I teach him that what he thinks about in his mind will grow stronger which is true for all of us.
- Instill a good work ethic for this will effect every area. Anthony takes pride in mowing the yard and cleans his mower and golf cart without being asked. Always reward this behavior with positive compliments.
As you think of impacting young ones, a good place to start is to sow the spectacular so you can reap the incredible.
C) Choose what to plant…
A) Act by feeding, watering, protecting the tender sprouts….
R) Receive what you reap, for what you believe becomes your reality…
This gives the acronym CAR, to take you places you never dreamed possible for you and your young ones.
What is important is having grandkids know you are spending time, talent and treasure on them for they are the greatest treasure. As you take new ground and change their lives you are causing a shift in the culture for the better. A shift from apathy to action that ignites victory and success for your young ones and the ones to come after them. But the most exciting place you can go with them is a person, and His name is Jesus! He gives us the ultimate place of peace, passion and purpose, not just now, but because of His great love for us, he has provided a place prepared for all eternity.
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Sam is a businessman, writer, entertainer, speaker, husband, father to five children, grandfather and great grandfather. Sam graduated from Huntington University with a B.A. in psychology and drama and pursued a degree in Broadcasting from Illinois Central College with graduate degree in Christian Ministry from Christian Leadership University. Sam is the creator of Granpa Cratchet, one of the most successful touring shows in the history of the live events industry. Millions of people see Granpa every year all across the United States at fairs and festivals. His characters have appeared on every major network: Good Morning America, Entertainment Tonight, The Today Show (4 times). Sam and his characters have made over 500 local appearances and on all the major networks; NBC, CBS, ABC, ESPN, PBN, The LeSea Network, The PTL Network and Praise the Lord. They currently appear all around the world every week on YouTube and Facebook, and on several satellite networks via the Kidz Television Network and The Captain Hook (children's) Show.
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