What a treat this week to meet by zoom with two of my granddaughters, 7 and 9. I hear a little bit about school, what they are learning and how their day went. However, as soon as I get off the call, I admit, I have a few tears. What I really long for are those hugs and “in the moment” times with them. How do I balance my greatest longings and turn them into hope?
Acknowledge the longings
In my case with them, we talked about how much we would like to be together and how we don’t like being apart. I loved how open and honest they were about wanting to be together and I could tell them how much I wanted to be with them.
What longings do you need to acknowledge, especially with your children or grandchildren? Children do pick up on much more than we may give them credit. Giving voice to our longings brings awareness to possibilities.
Scripture tells us to cry out to God.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition present your requests to God. Phillipians 4:6.
By coming clean with God, as it is, and sharing with others, the longings can be expressed.
Seek out others’ perspective
In the case of my granddaughters, I asked their advice as to what I might tell other grandparents who were apart from their grandchildren what worked well to stay connected. I wanted to hear their longings, too. They told me that weekly zoom calls with them and then family zoom calls worked well. They liked reading together on zoom and even eating meals together when possible. I told them I thought acting out the books by using their voices brought the books to life.
They remembered we had Easter brunch together on a zoom call and wondered if we would be doing something like that for Thanksgiving. I loved hearing their perspective and what they remembered from six months ago. I hadn’t planned that we would eat Thanksgiving together, however, I can now work towards some kind of eating together.
Other grandparents and parents have shared their own longings as to how to stay connected, especially with the holidays coming up. One friend lamented changes occurring when seeing her grandchildren. A job situation in her daughter’s home changed and they felt it unsafe for her to visit. We lamented together and will pray for each other as she navigates how to stay connected to her grandchildren now.
Ask God for wisdom
Lately, the idea of gathering grandparents together to support each other keeps coming across my radar. I have been seeking His face on who and how I am to serve others. By connecting with other grandparents who are challenged to connect with their grandchildren, I can explore ways we can support each other for the sake of the children.
I have had ideas of starting a podcast for grandparents come across my desk at least three times this last week. God certainly is getting my attention. I have been asking Him how to connect other grandparents together for mutual support, especially during these challenging times.
I think this prayer challenge from my church says it well:
“God, help me today to follow your lead, trusting You in such a way that I overflow with love and generosity to those around me. ” Amen
What might that prayer look like in your life? A longing in my life is to overflow with love and generosity to everyone I am around, my family, friends and readers like you. I want that overflow to bring hope to others.
What about you?
What longings are surfacing for you right now? What hope is God giving you, so that you can move forward?
May I pray for you?
We do want to move forward towards the longings of our hearts, the longings You have placed in our hearts.
Show us how to stay connected to our children and grandchildren during these challenging times,
For both the sake of the children and our own hearts.
Thank you for peace, hope and wisdom when we seek your face.
We pray all of this in Your precious name,
I look forward to hearing how God answers the longings of your heart. Reply to this blog and let me know or contact me.