I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth. (3 John:4 NIV)
Our Thursday morning habit was to drop older siblings off at school and then go visit Gigi. Gigi, short for great-grandma, lived forty-five minutes away. Gigi suffered from Parkinson’s disease, arthritis, and other numerous health issues. As much as I didn’t want to think about it, she was declining. To make the most of our time, we made a standing date to visit each Thursday morning.
Gigi loved those visits with her greats, Gage and Autumn. I was welcome, but the preschoolers were her biggest joy. We played, ate, made messes, snuggled, giggled, and had fun using Gigi’s foot stool to wash hands. We showered love on each other and built memories.
Thursday mornings with Gigi became a favorite time. When Gigi eventually moved to a hospice facility nearby, all of Gigi’s grands were happy to zip in before or after school to visit. What was hard to explain was that Gigi was getting ready to go and live with Jesus. Actually, it was not that difficult, since the young often accept hard-to-understand concepts much easier than adults.
In the wee hours of a May day, Gigi left her earthly body and went to her eternal reward. Gigi, my mama, was a lifelong believer in Jesus Christ and we KNOW she is with Jesus.
Discussions about Gigi went on for weeks. The grands accepted the truth, but still wondered how it all happened. We talked about missing Gigi and how she was living with Jesus now. The grands took it all to heart, desiring to go visit her again at her house. But in the next breath, they talked about how Gigi lived with Jesus and how one day I (me, Nana) would live with Jesus, and when they died, they too would live with Jesus and see Gigi. It was a blessing to hear them accept the truth about death as a Christian.
But what would the death of a loved one be like if I did not have faith in Christ and did not teach this truth to my grands? What if I was not relentless in my pursuit of Jesus and living an authentic faith, the type of faith that was discussed numerous times as I shuttled my grandchildren to school and Gigi’s house? How was my faith at work in the everyday lives of these preschoolers?
Death may be a difficult topic to some, but we will all face the death of our human bodies. For those who believe in the risen Savior, the death of a loved one is the perfect experience to openly discuss and lead the youngest generation towards a greater understanding of our faith.
As we seek to influence the preschoolers in our lives, let’s walk in relentless pursuit of the Truth and seek opportunities in everyday situations to speak our faith into the young hearts around us.
PRAY: Lord Jesus, lead me deeper into authentic faith as I relentlessly pursue You. Open doors and conversations with preschoolers, family, friends, and neighbors which allow me to share the truth about You. May I bring You joy as I walk in Your Truth. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Written by Angie Quantrell