Recently I was reading in John 15 where Jesus delivers his “I am” statement- “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener” and wondered how old a grapevine could live to be. I was amazed to discover they can live 120+ years. The oldest grape-producing vine living today is in Slovenia and over 400 years old!
Imagine the generations that took care of those vines. Creator Jesus knew the fruit that could be produced from a well-tended branch, but one thing was required to be productive. “If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit.” A good branch had to remain on the vine!
So, it is with the Christian grandparent. With an earnest desire to see our grandchildren become Christians and live victoriously in this world, we are called to intentionally ‘remain on the vine’ to bear the good fruit of faith before our adult children and grandchildren. Once secure on the Vine, the branch must grow “showing yourselves to be my disciples.” As God’s children we never ‘arrive’ as a Christian. We are to grow in faith our whole life long. We cannot assume we can pour faith and unconditional love into our grandchildren unless we are experiencing those same things in our relationship with Christ. We cannot give what we do not have ourselves. A healthy branch is an ever-growing branch!
A healthy ‘branch’ lives joyfully. “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” No one likes being around a grumpy ole’ grandparent. These verses prove a grumpy, negative, disagreeable grandparent is not a product of a healthy branch! Grandchildren need grandparents with a heart of joy, a fun-loving spirit, and a positive outlook on life. Grandparents who are pleasant to be around, speak kind words, encourage, serve, and have a heart for adventure.
The only national conference on Christian Grandparenting is coming to Shades Mountain Baptist Church for two inspiring days at the Legacy Grandparenting Summit 2021 on Oct. 21-22. With more Grandparents living today than at any time in history, today’s intentional Christian Grandparent can reach this and future generations for Christ! Be sure to stop by the Shades Mountain Baptist Church booth at the Celebrate the Family Expo May 8 at the Pelham Civic Complex to learn more about grandparenting resources including the Legacy Grandparenting Summit, www.legacycoalition.com/Summit.
GrandLife Director, Shades Mountain Baptist Church