Learn how to have important conversations like this in our book Never Too Late: Encouraging Faith In Your Adult Child.”
Mom & Dad, Your Time has Passed
When we think about hurting and broken families, we often think of the impact on children. However, when it comes to family fragmentation, older members of the family suffer as well. The message to senior adults in our culture today is, “Your time has passed! It’s time for you to move on to a retirement community, and let the next generation take things from here.” How far we’ve fallen from the biblical view of family, in which our elders sit in the places of honor and influence. I refuse to believe that it’s God’s plan for men and women to go through the blessings and trials of life, to learn through painful experiences, to walk with Jesus and know Him in a passionate and personal way, and just when they get to the point of being able to offer some true wisdom and perspectives on life, we tell them their time has passed.
On the other side of the coin, Satan has crafted a second deceptive strategy. He wages his war indirectly, but with firm resolve. He loves for empty-nest parents to believe, “This is my time. I raised my kids. I worked hard. I’m done!” With all due respect to those who have raised their children to adulthood, God’s Word calls older men and women to a unique, necessary, and powerful season of ministry and impact. Our responsibilities to lead our families increase—not decrease—when grandchildren come. We may not be changing as many diapers, doing laundry all day, and helping with homework, but if God blesses us with grandchildren, then He has chosen to put more immortal souls under our care and influence—and that is a serious calling from God.
We must all push back against the lie that we no longer have influence in the lives of our children. They may live on the other side of the country and, even worse, their hearts may be very far from us, but the mission of parenting does not end when our kids leave the house. No matter what has happened in our relationships with our sons or daughters, God still has a plan to use us to point their hearts toward Christ.