On February 24, more than 70 people from 19 different churches attended the first “Do it Grandly” conference held in Lansing, Michigan. At this conference, grandparents were encouraged to think, act, and pray strategically in the lives of their grandchildren.
In addition to the main sessions, three workshops were offered, one of which was titled “Using Technology to Pass on your Faith”.
Some of us are up-to-date on technology. We can communicate using text messages, Instagram, Facebook, Skype, Facetime, etc. Unfortunately many of us are not adept at these skills. We have exempted ourselves from learning and with that exemption we have risked the ability to communicate with our grandchildren, especially as they get older. This workshop addressed the challenge of keeping up in a technological world.
Our grandparents faced the same challenge. They were probably the first of our ancestors to have a telephone. Calls were expensive, but the technology was simple. Pick up the ear piece. Wait for the operator to connect you. Speak into the candlestick receiver. Say who you were calling and wait until you were connected. Simple, but then, they invented the rotary dial…
The following video is quite amusing and demonstrates the fact that new technology is always challenging.
After watching it, many of us would ask, “Did they really have to explain this?” But the rotary dial was as new to people of that era as Instagram is to many of us today. New technology always seems more complicated, but with a little explanation it becomes easy.
The key point of this workshop was that you can learn at least one piece of “overlapping technology” to communicate with each of your grandkids. You can find that out easily from their parents (at least until the kids are ten years old). Almost all of these technologies are actually quite simple. If your grandchildren can learn how to use them, you can learn also, just like the girl in the video who quickly mastered the rotary phone.
Mary Lou Hoffman, a grandmother from Jackson, Michigan, attended the technology workshop. She said, “I learned that I need to get into my grandkids’ world if I want to have a better relationship with them. I’ve never sent a single text in my life. I’m going to start learning today before it’s too late. I want to be a cool grandma who communicates with my grandkids in modern ways, not an old fuddy duddy.”
Many of the attendees found new hope, and new friends, exchanging e-mail addresses and phone numbers for later support.
Tim Shireman is the grandfather of four and a Grandly editor.
Copyright © 2018 Grandly: The Strategic Grandparents Club.