By Linda Gilden, Crosswalk.com
Have you ever considered your home holy ground?
For your children and grandchildren, every time they walk through the door, your home becomes holy ground. Actually, there are times I wonder if my grandchildren recognize that. Every time they come into our home, their shoes come off right inside the door!
Only two places in Scripture do we see the term “holy ground.”
First in Exodus 3. Moses saw the burning bush and went over to investigate why the bush was burning. As Moses approached the bush, God spoke to him. “Do not come any closer. Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.”
The same phrase is used in Joshua 5:15 when Joshua marches around the town of Jericho. Once the city has fallen, Joshua falls to the ground and asks the Lord what message he has for Him. The Lord said to him, “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.”
The places in our lives when we feel the presence of God and come face to face with some aspect of His plan for our lives can be holy ground. Sometimes it can be at a place where you have gone seeking. Other times God surprises you with the sweetness of His Holy Spirit. But no matter where the place or what the revelation form God, you feel His presence so strongly that you agree, the place is sacred.
Your home can become holy ground as you share your faith with your children and grandchildren. What is the best way to do that?
1. Purpose Your Home to Be a Sanctuary
Decide from the moment you move in that God will be at the head of your household. Dedicate your home for the purpose of serving God and sharing His message with all who come through the doors. Joshua 24:15 declares “as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Make that your mandate and live by it.
Many times when you hear believers give their testimonies, it involves seeing the Gospel lived out in their grandparents lives. I want to be that grandparent.
From the moment my first grandchild was born, I took every opportunity to share Jesus with her. Rocking her as an infant, I sang choruses and children’s songs that told the story of Jesus. I told her stories and quoted Scripture. Even though I knew she wasn’t understanding it all, I prayed she would hear the love in my voice and realize that what I said to her was special.
One time I was babysitting and my son-in-law came home. Tears were running down my cheeks as I rocked my granddaughter. When he saw my tears, he rushed into the room. “What’s the matter?” he asked.
“Nothing,” I said. “She just looked up at me and smiled and looked just like her mother!”
It is a privilege to nurture another generation and help children grow to find their special place in the family.
2. Prepare Intentionally
Know that as a grandparent, this is part of your assignment from God. We must prepare to make home a sanctuary where Jesus is lifted up.
Moses and Joshua recognized that the burning bush and the falling of the wall in Jericho was part of a special assignment God had given them.
Grandparents, we have an assignment too. God placed those grandchildren in your family with your children as their parents by His design. Step up to the plate and complete your assignment well. If you are not a grandparent yet, your current assignment is to study God’s Word so that you are prepared when the time comes to share Jesus with younger generations with all your strength.
Deuteronomy 6 gives us specific instructions, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children (and grandchildren!).
Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and your gates” (verses 5-9).
Today those instructions may include talking about them in carpool, hanging hand crafted Scripture plaques, or wearing tshirts with a Scripture message. Sharing them with your grandchildren may mean using different tools but the message is the same as centuries ago.
Photo Credit: ©GettyImages/jacoblund
3. Play Wholeheartedly
Once you have grandchildren, your job is to love them unconditionally, teach them by setting a good example, and play with them wholeheartedly. Even play can be instructive.
Select an activity that is age appropriate. Get down in the floor with them if you are physically able. Learn to ride a bicycle when they do. Make the most of every teachable moment.
I remember well the day I got my first bicycle. My grandmother got her first bicycle, too. Mine had a little red license plate hooked to the back of the seat that had my name printed on it. My grandmother had a blue one to match her bicycle. I love that we were learning things together. She was always ready to play with me and she made me feel so important.
I don’t know if she was having as much fun as she let on but I felt her love and encouragement in everything I did.
Find out what your grandchildren’s favorite games are so you can play along. Teach them to play “Go, fish!,” and “Crazy Eights,” and “Rummicube.” If they have art interests, buy them paints and canvases.
4. Promote Jesus in Everything
This may seem more of a commercial word. But if we are truly to share Jesus with all those who come into our homes, He must be lifted up in all situations. Make your home a welcoming place where your grandchildren are glad to bring their friends. Love them and let them know by your actions and reactions that you are a believer.
When you make dinner for a friend who is sick, take your grandchildren to deliver it. Let them draw get-well pictures to encourage your friend. If you drive a mobile meals route, take grandchildren along. When you take donations to the local food bank or clothes closet, let them pick out a few from their closets to donate. Talk about how their donations will help others.
5. Pray for your Grandchildren
As a grandparent you have prayed for and with your grandchildren. Praying over them can bless your grandchildren.
When your grandchildren are first born, gather the family to have a time of blessing over them. If you have older grandchildren and they either didn’t receive this blessing at birth or want to participate in the grandparents blessing of their sibling or cousin, let them do so.
If you use anointing oil as a means of blessing and worship, by all means anoint your grandchildren. If that is unfamiliar to you, your grandchildren will be every much as blessed by your praying over them, laying your hands on them, and dedicating them to the Lord. Make sure they hear you ask God to help you be the best grandparent they could possibly want.
When your grandchildren have a sleepover at your house, read devotions with them before they go to bed, ask if they have concerns that you can pray for, and then let them take turns praying over those concerns.
Never forget that your home is holy ground. Treat it as such.
Welcome God’s presence every day. Invite Him to be part of everything that goes on there. And be sure to thank Him for the honor of lifting up His name and the freedom to do so.
Linda Gilden is an award-winning writer, speaker, editor, certified writing and speaking coach, and personality consultant. Her passion is helping others discover the joy of writing and learn to use their writing to make a difference. Linda recently released Articles, Articles, Articles! and is the author of over a thousand magazine articles and 19 books including the new Quick Guides for Personalities. She loves every opportunity to share her testimony, especially through her writing. Linda’s favorite activity (other than eating folded potato chips) is floating in a pool with a good book surrounded by splashing grandchildren—a great source of writing material!