Before I became a grandparent, I snickered at the bumper sticker that offers the thrilling possibility - to both the hearer and the communicator! - "Let me tell you about my grandchildren."
I don't have one of those bumper stickers yet, but after twelve years of being a grandfather, I fully understand the sentiment. So, allow me to share a few thoughts with you about my grandchildren that reflect our Heavenly Father's loving devotion to us, and our response.
Jackson, our first grandchild, is now twelve. When he was five, after spending the weekend with us, he walked up to me as he left to go home. He stuck out his hand, in which he held a quarter. "Granddaddy," he said, "I want you to have this." Jackson uttered the words with such sincerity and feeling that the moment remains one of the most blessed experiences of my life. It was just a quarter, which doesn't buy much these days. However, it remains one one of my most treasured possessions and reminds me of how we richly bless our Heavenly Father when we offer Him ourselves and our possessions to be used for His glory and the blessing of others. We may not think we are much, or have much to offer Him, but in our Lord's sight, the devotion of our heart means more than can imagine. "The Lord taketh pleasure in His people" (Psalm 149:4).
Our granddaughter Emma is 11. Among her many gifts, she is very athletic. She runs like the wind, and over the years I've taken she and Jackson to a particular playground where one of our favorite activities is to do time trials around the field. One day about a year ago, Emma and I went to the playground by ourselves. I got my stopwatch ready, and Emma was off! Midway through her first run, I shouted at her from about a hundred yards, "Go, Emma, go! You're doing great!" I'll never forget her response. I could see the smile on her face, and she began to pump her arms over her head in unmitigated joy. Joy that became my joy as well. In that very moment, the thought occurred to me, "This is how the Lord feels when we rejoice in Him and the blessings He provides." He rejoices even more. "He will rejoice over thee with joy" (Zephaniah 3:17).
Ewan and I have a special and personal connection. He's two, and is slightly on the shy side (of course, with Davis blood running through his veins, that's not likely to continue!). Allow me to preface what I want to share with you about Ewan: until a few months ago, I had never performed a fist bump in my life. However, as we were saying goodbye to Ewan one day after spending time with him, his shyness led him to a bit of a reserved response. For some reason, I stuck out my fist, which led Ewan to a pretty quick and enthusiastic response. We did the bump, which has subsequently become our personal form of greetings and farewells. It also reminds me of how personal our Lord is with each of us as we trust Him and walk with Him. He numbers the very hairs of our head, as the Lord Jesus Christ declared (Matthew 10:30). We matter that much to Him, and He works in each of us to form responses based on the principles of Scripture that apply to all. However, He also specifically and personally works in each of us to make every bond unique to Him and ourselves. I look forward to fist bumping with Ewan, just as I'm sure our Heavenly Father rejoices in the particular ways He works in each of us, and our individual response.
Finally, Evelyn, named after my mother. That in itself is enough to bless my heart beyond measure. Evelyn was born in July, and any unbiased assessment will result in the opinion that she is the sweetest and most beautiful baby presently in existence! At a family function recently, I held Evelyn until my right arm became numb. That was fine with me. I was reminded of times long ago, when holding our babies caused in me one of the most right and relaxed feelings I've ever known. I've never been able to explain that, other than to remember that the Lord made our hearts to be His home. When we trusted the Lord Jesus, the Spirit of God came to dwell within us, never to leave. He loves being that near to us, and the sense of rest I've known in holding our babies originates in our Heavenly Father's own heart: "He will rest in His love" (Zephaniah 3:17). Holding Evelyn reminded me of that, and overwhelmed my heart with the thought that we bring such feeling and sensibility to the heart of God.
Well, you've let me tell you about my grandchildren! Thank you, and any time you have an extra 10-12 hours, I have much more I could share! Yes, I now understand those bumper stickers. Wonder where I could get one…
"But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear Him, and His righteousness unto children's children."
Weekly Memory Verse
Who can understand his errors? Cleanse Thou me from secret faults.