At the time of this writing, I have four grandsons (Emmett, Everett, Gavin, and Rowan) and one granddaughter (Fallon Ann). I love each of them so very much, and oftentimes it is very hard for me after they have gone home (or when I have left their house). Each of them has a part of my heart.
I still don’t know how it happens, but (seemingly) each and every time we visit the grandchildren, they light up when they see us and come running over to give me (and Cathy) a hug.
And yet, because there is only one granddaughter, I can write this without offending the boys…that is until another granddaughter comes along.
But something happened to me on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 6:34 in the morning, when our daughter Elizabeth (with her husband Chris at her side) gave birth to her first child; Fallon Ann.
A casual look at my BlogSpot revealed that I have written about her at least sixteen times since she was born. I re-read some of them tonight as I am writing this week’s blog and cried because of my love for her.
I was thinking of the casual conversations Cathy and I had this past week when we spent time at Fallon’s hobby farm along with her brother Gavin, my daughter Elizabeth, and her husband Chris. Cathy and I had gone up to their home to help build a playhouse.
I should note that when I work on projects, I have a history of being goal orientated. But sometimes it has been at the expense of quality time with my children and grandchildren.
This comes from my years working in construction where production meant profits. In fact, Cathy’s dad, when he was alive, used to “drive me nuts” when he would stop and start work on projects (such as when we built the cabin together) just so that he could spend time with his children and grandchildren.
He was a man who really knew that things were not more important than people and relationships. And so, as I thought of him on the drive up to the farm, I was determined this would not be one of those times so I asked Cathy to help me take some breaks to spend quality time with Fallon and Gavin.
I should note that even if I am focused or goal orientated, I have always made room for my children to help by handing stuff to me or swinging a hammer or cleaning up. Today was no acception as Gavin and Fallon worked alongside of us.
At one point towards five pm, Cathy told Gavin and Fallon that we would be staying over for supper so that grandpa could spend time with them. That was my cue to set down the hammer and stop working for the day.
And, just to make sure that I got the message, Cathy said gently said to me; “No more work so that you can spend time with them.” I took the opportunity to thank her and proceeded to go to Gavin and Fallon who called for me to push them on the swings.
It was a wonderful opportunity to swing and talk and laugh and spend quality time with just the two of them as mom and dad cooked supper with Cathy. During this time away from work, Fallon really touched my heart on two occasions.
The first came when I showed her a photo of a drawing that she did on the white board in our kitchen. The weekend before when she was at our house she started drawing a face in dry erase markers and I asked her who it was and she said; “It’s you” and gave me a big smile as she proceeded to draw another person whom I had assumed was grandma Cathy.
When I showed her the photo of the drawing and made a comment about grandpa and grandma, she said; “That’s not grandma, that is a picture I drew of you and me, grandpa”. I stood corrected and my heart was touched that she would draw a picture of the two of us.
After a while, Fallon said that she wanted to sweep out the clubhouse one more time before we ate, so I walked with her.
As we walked through her yard, talking about all sorts of things, Fallon said to me; “Grandpa, I’ve been trying to think of something special that just you and I can do together today.” This little girl was reciprocating love to me and desired to spend time with me and communicated it so very clearly.
And, as important as it was for her to get her clubhouse built, she wanted even more to spend time with the builder.
Now it is one thing to for me to think that I am a favorite person to my children and grandchildren and quite another when I find out that it may be true.
For some of us, this is easy to believe and receive. For others of us, this is not so easy to believe and receive. In fact, our minds can self-talk us into pushing it away.
And yet, the fact is my granddaughter loves her grandpa and wanted (wants) to spend time with him.
As I write this I realize that sometimes I do the same thing with God. Oh, I am grateful that He provides for me and forgives me (and doesn’t squash me like a bug).
But sometimes it is hard to believe and receive the fact that He wants to spend time with me; after all…if He only knew…oh wait, He does know…
Or that He could possibly ever say to me; “I’ve been trying to think of something special that just you and I can do together today.”
It is in these moments that I must believe that He has a part of my heart and stand on His Word that tells me that He demonstrated His own love toward me when I was a sinner and died for me.” (Romans 5:8)
He hung on a cross while we were yet sinners arms wide open, heart exposed, and longing for us to come to Him like my grandchildren do every time I see them.
And He isn’t as preoccupied with the religious things as we might think. And, as important as it is for us to do things for Him, He wants even more to spend time with the person doing the work.
He wants us to come to Him and spend time with Him as though nothing else matters.
How about you? Do you know that you are loved; really loved? Believe it or not you can. God is waiting for an opportunity to love you. But don’t take my word for it; take His – the BIBLE. Unsure where to start? Drop me a line firstname.lastname@example.org
I would love to share with you how you, too, can have a slate that is clean and heart that is open to love.
Or call 1-877-2GRAHAM (1-877-247-2426) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.