DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: Can grandparents do anything to influence their grandchildren spiritually? We live away from our grandchildren and only see them a few times a year, but we want to encourage them to become followers of Jesus. J.K.
By BILLY GRAHAM
Tribune Media Services
DEAR J.K.: Im grateful for your concern for your grandchildren and yes, you can be a positive spiritual influence even if you arent with them on a regular basis.
What can you do? First, you can encourage their parents to be concerned for their spiritual welfare. (Do it gently, however; you dont want them to think youre criticizing them or trying to interfere.) Hopefully theyre active in a church, and if so you can encourage them to take advantage of its programs for children. If they arent involved in a church, you can encourage them to do so. The Bible says, Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it (Proverbs 22:6).
Then you can let your grandchildren know you love them and are praying for them. (Many grandparents today have learned to use email just so they can stay in touch with their grandchildren.) In addition, when you are with them, ask God to help you be an example to them of Christ-like faith and love, both by your speech and your actions.
You dont mention their ages , but consider giving them a Bible storybook written for children their age.
Most of all, pray for your grandchildren (and their parents). Distance may be a difficulty for you but it isnt to God. And be encouraged by Pauls words to his co-worker Timothy: Your sincere faith ... first lived in your grandmother Lois (2 Timothy 1:5).
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