In just about three months, my wife and I will join a very special club — we will become grandparents.
Our eldest daughter, Jordan, and her husband, Michael, are expecting their first child in November. By the time their daughter arrives, they will have celebrated their third wedding anniversary. As people have learned of this upcoming event, Terri Lee and I have been showered with congratulations and told of the incredible blessing that grandchildren are. A commonly shared refrain is that we will simply not be able to appreciate it until it happens.
As I have heard people say this, I am reminded of a comment made to me shortly before Jordan’s birth. Terri Lee and I had just celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary, back in 1992, as Jordan prepared to make her entry into this world. My work supervisor at the time, a father of four children himself, told me there is nothing that can prepare you for that moment when your baby is born.
He was right.
Terri Lee had a prolonged delivery with our first child. She was moved into a dedicated delivery room in case specialized procedures would be needed. That would not be the case. The instant I saw my daughter, a feeling rushed over me that cannot be explained — only experienced. What my supervisor had tried to express in words paled to the reality of it. I am told to be prepared to experience something special like this with the arrival of our granddaughter.
Jordan and Michael have decided to name their daughter Margot Avett Nallen. I am excited to see baby Margot for the first time. Oh the experience of holding her in my arms and kissing that precious face. Cupping her hand in the palm of my hand. Enjoying the moment of watching our daughter hold her daughter. Incredible. It’s a glimpse of the purity of love that our Father in heaven has for us. If you get the idea that Terri Lee and I are beaming at the prospect of becoming grandparents, you would be correct.
I wonder if it ever gets old for our heavenly Father. To think of the number of lives that He has created – it’s overwhelming. It especially overwhelms me when I think of the unique nature of each one of us and His familiarity with each of us. Scripture speaks to the fact that even the hairs on our head are numbered. God knows us in the tiniest of details. Wow!
In Proverbs 17 (NLT), we are told that grandchildren are the crowning glory of the aged; parents are the pride of their children. Becoming grandparents is yet another gift and blessing from God. I am excited about all that I will have the opportunity to learn and experience. I know also that this brings great responsibility. God’s word reminds us that to whom much is given, much is expected. Caring for the life of another person — there is not a bigger responsibility.
For those of you who have followed my writings in this column, you know the struggles that I endured earlier in my life. That had a direct impact on my ability to raise our daughters. While having a grandchild cannot be considered a do-over, it does give me an opportunity to live out my faith in front of them. And isn’t that part of what God commands us in His word – God expects us to be doers of the word, not simply hearers of it.
As I emerge from the latest storm in my life, I have hope. I have hope because of the One that I serve. I have hope because of who He is in my life. Like the apostle Paul, I press on, not because I have already attained or already perfected. No, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:14 (KJV).
Well sweet little Margot, your parents and all four of your grandparents are excited to meet you very soon. We know you will have an impact on this world — starting with the six of us. We will receive you as God’s precious gift.