Big Idea: The American Dream often pulls us away from a more biblical vision for life. God has created multiple opportunities for investing in intergenerational faith which are far more fulfilling than more common cultural forms of finding meaning.
I. A call to pass on the faith
A. Giving back
B. Grandparents are called to their grandchildren.
II. The cultural alternative vision
A. Retirement culture
B. Seeking purpose in rest, finding happiness in medicated distraction
C. Our new normal
D. Every situation is different.
III. Critical roles grandparents can play.
Seven roles: intercessor, storyteller, truth ally, encourager, sub, perspective-giver/ sounding board,
1) Have you figured out something about life that you wished you had known earlier? What is that? Are you willing to share that discovery? Why do you think you didn’t discover that truth sooner?
2) Where is the older generation in our culture? Are they at the center of things or on the margins? If the elderly are at the margins of our culture, where do we get wisdom from?
3) Do you tend to think of the best answers being cutting edge, or classic (i.e., having stood the test of time)? Why? What are the implications of your answer for the role of grandparents?
4) Is the concept of retirement biblical? Why or why not?
5) If Christianity is viewed in a negative way in our culture, what should grandparents do when their children view their faith as unwelcome or even dangerous?
6) Of these seven roles, which do you find most exciting for seeing faith thrive in the next generation: intercessor, storyteller, truth ally, encourager, sub, perspective-giver/sounding board, safety net?
7) Are any of these new ideas to you? If you are a parent, which of these would you most like to see in the lives of your own children?
8) What would it take to make those things happen? Do you plan, schedule, and budget for these kinds of things? Is it reasonable to expect intergenerational spiritual formation to just happen without intentionality?
What are you willing to do today to make this happen? Would you make one “I will” statement?