Grandparents@Prayer

These are challenging moral and spiritual times in which we live, especially for our grandchildren. A media-driven culture has desensitized our grandchildren and pushed the boundaries of a Christ-like lifestyle. “The role of grandparenting in the second half of life is becoming more important than anyone would ever have imagined. The rescue of our culture may well rest on the shoulders of today’s grandparents. What an incredible call for the second half of life.”1 Do we, as grandparents, understand the mighty and powerful force that prayer can be for our grandchildren in these times?

Years ago, Esther stood in the gap for her people, the Jews. Today grandparents can stand in the gap with prayer for their grandchildren.

As grandparents, we can make a significant difference in the world by praying regularly and deliberately for our grandchildren and their parents. We have an opportunity to powerfully touch the lives of another generation for eternity.

I experienced, firsthand, the impact my prayers can have when I received a letter from my oldest granddaughter in which she wrote: “Your phone calls, cards, and emails were encouraging and made a significant impact on my life, especially in my teenage and college years. Your prayers and encouragement have been rock-solid reminders of God’s truth in my incredible, crazy life-shaping years, and now in my married life. Your prayers help me surrender the craziness of my life to God.”

Here is the challenge I am laying before you. Will you take up the call to start or participate in a G@P group in your area? Invite other grandparents in your area to join you in the building of a G@P group to intercede for the next generations. My husband and I participate in a G@P group and find it a blessing to pray with other grandparents for our grandchildren.

Check out the format of a G@P group, the current locations, read the testimonials, and request additional information.

Happy Grandparenting

1 Randy Swanson, “Broken Contract” Significant Living magazine, issue May/June 2009, p44.
“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children (grandchildren) are walking with the Lord.” III John 1: 4

How do I form a Prayer Group?

  1. Begin with prayer:
    1. Ask God for an outpouring of His blessing on the prayer group that you want to start.
    2. Ask God to guide you as you prepare for the initial meeting:
      1. What is the date of the first meeting?
      2. What is the time of the meeting?
      3. What is the location?
      4. Who will you invite? (Be sure to consider grandparents from your church, workplace and neighborhood.)
  2. Host an initial meeting:
    1. Open with a prayer and ten-minute devotion.
    2. Discuss why you want to start a Grandparent @ Prayer group.
    3. Decide upon the following:
      1. Where will you meet?
      2. Will you meet once or twice a month?
      3. What time will the meetings begin? End? (We recommend an hour or 1 ½ hours, maximum.)
      4. Are you going to begin the meetings with a devotional? If so, who is responsible for the devotional at the next meeting?
      5. Discuss the format of the meeting. (See “Ideas for the Format of the Meeting.”)
      6. What is the most effective way for you to remind members of the next meeting (email, church bulletin, phone call, etc.)?
  3. Host the next meeting:
    1. Start and end the meeting promptly.
    2. Remind everyone of the following:
      1. This time is devoted to praying for our grown children and their spouses, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
      2. The things we share at a prayer group are confidential.

If you have other questions, contact Sherry Schumann at sherry@christiangrandparenting.net.

Format for “Grandparents @ Prayer” (G@P) Intercessory Prayer Groups

 

The question about G@P, which we receive the most, is “What format should we use for our meetings?”

The answer is that our groups are as different as the grandparents and the grandchildren for whom they pray. Some groups meet in homes; others meet in churches. Some share food and fellowship; others don’t. Our most unique G@P group is made of two sisters who pray over the phone on Monday mornings before they go to work.

For those of you who have never led a Bible study or prayer group, we recommend one of the following formats:

Format A

  • Read a passage of Scripture or a devotion (ten minutes).
  • Share praise reports and prayer requests (15-20 minutes, maximum).
  • Begin the prayer time by asking the Holy Spirit to guide you.
  • Pray aloud (30-35 minutes).
    • Start with praise (acknowledging and thanking God for who He is, such as the Creator, Great Physician, the One Who Sees, Love, Mercy, etcetera).
    • Give thanks.
    • Intercede on behalf of your grown children, their spouses and your grandchildren.
  • End with the Lord’s Prayer.

 Note: The problem with this format is that groups often spend too much time sharing their prayer requests and not enough time praying. Members need to be brief when they share their requests. 

Format B

  • Read a passage of Scripture or a devotion (10-15 minutes).
  • Begin the prayer time by asking the Holy Spirit to guide you.
  • Pray aloud (45-50 minutes).
    • Start with praise (acknowledging and thanking God for who He is (such as the Creator, Great Physician, the One Who Sees, Love, Mercy, etcetera).
    • Give thanks.
    • Intercede on behalf of your grown children, their spouses and your grandchildren.
  • End with the Lord’s Prayer.

Note: Instead of having a designated time to share praise reports and prayer requests, they are shared during the actual prayer time. After a grandparent gives thanks for a specific answer to prayer or offers a prayer request, the other members pray as the Spirit leads them.

We encourage you to start a group of your own. We define a group as two or more praying grandparents, because Christ said, “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them” (Matthew 18:20).

The frequently asked questions below will help you get your G@P group started.

How many grandparents are needed to start a G@P group?

Two or more praying grandparents. Christ said, “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them” (Matthew 18:20).

Is there a limit to the number of grandparents in a group?

Theoretically, no. Many groups find it beneficial to limit the number to 8-12 members and then to break into two groups when the initial group exceeds that number.

How do we get the word out to other grandparents?

Word of mouth, church announcements, church newsletter and pastor recommendations.

How often do G@P groups meet?

This decision should be determined by your group. Some G@P groups meet weekly, bi-monthly or monthly. The most important thing is the group meets on a regularly scheduled basis.

What is the structure of the meeting?

Structure should be determined by your group. Some groups begin with fellowship, while some begin with a brief devotional. Others meet only to pray.

What is the minister’s involvement?

After giving approval, the minister can be as involved as they want. We have found it usually depends if the minister is a grandparent or not.

Where do the groups meet?

Normally, meetings take place either in homes or at churches, where there is a limited number of distractions. Once again, this decision is determined by your group.

How long do the meetings last?

One hour is the recommended time limit. (This prevents getting off-topic.)

What resources do you recommend?

Some of the G@P groups are using the book Grandparenting with a Purpose: Effective Ways to Pray for your Grandchildren as a discussion guide. The book provides helpful resources for intentional prayer and challenges grandparents to model a standard of moral living in an immoral world. The book is available for $10.50 including shipping at http://www.gdptpr.com.

What is required from the members?

Grandparents need to give a verbal commitment to being a part of the group. While situations arise and emergencies occur, grandparents should attend as many meetings as possible.

What is the cost?

There is no monetary cost.

How are privacy issues handled?

G@P groups provide a safe place for grandparents to share openly. We recommend ensuring privacy in the following manner:

  1. Each group needs to stress that whatever is shared within the group is confidential; whatever is shared within the group, stays within the group.
  2. Any grandparent concerned about privacy issues should refrain from referring to his or her grandchild by name. Instead, “my grandchild” or “my grandchildren” should be used.
  3. Relationships will form as the grandparents pray together. Privacy becomes less of an issue with groups who have developed trust among their members.
  4. Grandparents need to pray only for their children, grandchildren and greatgrandchildren. By restricting prayers for extended family members, neighbors and friends, privacy issues are decreased.

Resources to use in your meetings…

Prayer Ministry Brochure

Download and print our prayer ministry brochure to use when inviting grandparents to join you in prayer.

Prayer Cards

Christian Grandparenting Network has several prayer cards available for you to use in your meetings and hand out to friends and grandparents in your church. Each card is available printed in packs of 50 or you can download a PDF and print it out for free.

We’d love to hear from you.

If you have questions, ideas, or would like to share your story about starting a Grandparents@Prayer group we’d love to hear from you.