Recently, I was inspired to encourage our grandchildren and their parents in this unsettled time of American history. I wanted to give them something that would lift their own spirits and at the same time motivate them to reach out to others who need encouragement.
For years, I had a list of over twenty quotations posted above my office desk. Such words of life like, “A cheerful heart is a good medicine, but a downcast spirit dries up the bones.” (Proverbs 17:22) or “Kindness is more important than wisdom, and the recognition of this is the beginning of wisdom” (Theodore Isaac Rubin). They often gave me relief, encouragement or a prod to continue what I was doing to completion.
I decided that if those words of inspiration could bring me hope, they would do the same for my children and grandchildren. After typing up my favorite quotations, I printed them, cut them into strips of paper, and mailed them to my adult children. I enclosed a letter of encouragement and included ideas on how to use the quotations in their families’ daily lives.
First, I suggested they paste them on poster board and display them in the grandchildren’s study room or other areas they frequent. My hope was that this would make them familiar with the words and spark their curiosity.
Second, I suggested they keep the quotations in an envelope on the dining room table. Each evening after dinner, they could select one, have a grandchild read it, and then lead a discussion about the meaning of that quotation. An added bonus would be to see the grandchildren relate these words to a current activity, problem, or situation in their lives.
Lastly, I suggested the quotations could be pasted up two at a time in the hallway or by the door where they would be seen daily as they left home for the day. Upon reading an inspiring quote as they went out the door, my hope was that it would be used to encourage others.
Providing inspiring words of wisdom, hope, and encouragement, especially those based on the Word of God, is one way to pass on our faith to our grandchildren.
For discussion: What are some practical ways you can encourage your adult children and grandchildren?
For action: Consider finding some quotations or bible verses that have spoken to you and sharing them with your grandchildren.
Mike Luea is the grandfather of 25 and lives in Lansing, Michigan with his wife, Barb.
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