This Sunday, September 13, is another national holiday that I did not know was a real holiday. Somewhat cynically, I thought it was created just to sell more greeting cards. But Grandparents’ Day was signed into law by a president just like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Thanksgiving. It was started by Marian McQuade (1917-2008) to encourage lonely nursing home residents. The West Virginia woman was relentless in calling attention to the lonely elderly. Also, she wanted to connect the wisdom of older adults to their grandchildren. West Virginia enacted Grandparents’ Day in 1973, and in 1978, President Carter signed it into national law, designating it on the Sunday after Labor Day.
I am in the season of grandparenting. Our eldest grandchild just turned 5, his little brother is 2, our granddaughter turned 2 on Labor Day, and her little brother is about to be born. Through the wonders of the internet, we were able to watch our little Texan Molly open her birthday present, and she was able to see and hear us sing “happy birthday.” What a wonderful way to stay connected. I suspect that many children and teens would love to show their grandparents how to do that.
I love being a grandparent! The little ones demonstrate unconditional love and trust. They watch everything we say and do and try to copy it. They will give you their whole hearts and great big hugs. They will tell you endless stories, they laugh at all of your jokes, and their hurts are cured with a kiss. So hooray for Marian McQuade, mother of 15, grandmother of 43 and great-grandmother of 15. She was an example of the words of Paul to Timothy when he said, “I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois. . .” 2 Timothy 1:5 (NIV)
Keep healthy. Pray mightily. Enjoy your life today. Connect with your grands. And let’s experience the love and power of God together.