*Update: Even though the goal was a big one, my granddaughter and I are getting closer to completing it! Genesis 1:1 was our first verse. For a full list of all 66 Verses to Memorize, go here.
In the Beginning
Three very powerful words.
Pregnant with possibility, those words.
In the beginning, I had no idea how we had gotten there.
After a long, hard haul … after a season of much despair… after dinners with consoling friends.
After long bubble baths in a tub full of tears … and after counseling with our pastor.
She was Born
Three very powerful words.
Packed with possibility, those words.
I’m a Grammie
If there ever was a resistant Grammie, it was me. I hadn’t planned on it, couldn’t get excited about it and didn’t feel I had the tools for it. Basically, I just wasn’t ready.
My grandmothers were my greatest influencers, but I felt like they were at different life stages when they got their new names (Grandmommy and Mamaw). I was still called Mom, and I still drove carpool. It just didn’t feel right. How was I supposed to be Mom to two kids still under the roof and Grammie to a newborn baby?
But, truth be told, I mostly didn’t think I had the emotional energy for it.
Mike and I had tried so hard to have a perfect family. Then when things didn’t pan out perfectly, we spent a few years beating our heads against the wall and begging God to turn the ship around.
I’ve since learned so much that would have been valuable to know then. (Anyone else?) And now, finally, the waters were becoming a little less choppy.
But I wasn’t finished recuperating from the storm.
In His Time
There was a popular song back in the ‘80’s that we sang at church. It was written by a woman named Diane Ball on the first day of her family vacation. But she didn’t write it until after she’d been stewing for several hours over her husband’s late arrival home from work. Because they weren’t getting away when planned, Diane feared she would be late to a speaking engagement on the first leg of their trip.
When Diane had fretted long enough, she prayed, asking God to still her mind and give her some peace. That’s when three little words occurred to her – in his time – from Ecclesiastes 3:11.
In His time, in His time
He makes all thing beautiful in His time.
Lord, my life to you I bring.
May each song I have to sing
Be to you a lovely thing, in your time
God answered Diane’s prayer, and in the process, gave her the lyrics to a song that still calms the hearts of all who hear it.
Dancing and Napping
Just as God answered the prayer of Diane Ball, he was answering mine as well. He was fitting me for the job and giving me the wherewithal with which to accomplish it.
I was able to take some time off from work and keep my new grandbaby while her mom went to school. It was on those quiet mornings, at our house out in the country, that I fell in love with a baby girl named Kynzie.
At first, she was small enough to lay longways in my lap, her head on my knees, tiny legs folded, my thumbs anchoring her fists curled into a ball. We spent many naps together in my front porch rocker, she soundly snoozing, me watching her breathe. And listening for the sound of my son’s school bus coming down the street.
As she got a little bigger, I turned on the dance tunes, and we swayed and twirled our way around the living room or out on the back patio.
We read books, sang songs, talked, fed carrots to the horse, visited the neighbors’ goats, and bonded like glue spread between two sheets of notebook paper.
A Lofty Goal
During all that napping and dancing and rocking, a lofty goal began to take shape in my heart. It was so lofty that I didn’t want to mention it to anyone. So I prayed about it for a long time. And I did my due diligence, thinking through what it would require.
And then, about a year ago, I became brave enough to tell my then 7 year-old granddaughter about my plan.
A Grammie’s Plan
I want us to memorize a verse from every book of the Bible – together.
Whew. Even as I spoke the words, I wondered if we could do it. How we would do it. And if she would want to do it.
This wasn’t going to be easy. But it sure was going to be good.
A Grammie’s Job
Even though her mom is the most amazing single mom, and she could surely do it if she wanted to, I saw this as a job for a Grammie.
A Grammie who would have done it as a Mom if she hadn’t been so busy doing laundry and making grocery lists and talking on the cordless phone.
A Grammie who, more than anything else in the world, wants her granddaughter to know Jesus, to know how much he loves her, and to be confident, in the dead of her darkest night, that he’s right there with her.
A Granddaughter Agrees
So, she said yes.
Well, actually, it was a precious and enthusiastic “OKAY!”
My heart melted (again) right then and there.
And then I promised to pay her $10 for every verse. LOL
At the Start
We started at the start. The very first verse on the very first page of the very first book of the Bible.
Genesis 1:1. That’s where we started, in the beginning.
Up to Twelve
We’ve now memorized 12 out of 66 – BUT THIS YEAR, 2017, we plan to memorize the remaining 54!
Do you know how many $10 bills that is?
Oh, well. There won’t be anything else this whole year that I’d rather be doing.
And there certainly won’t be any better use for my $10 bills.
A Look Behind
Looking back, I’m even less sure of how we got here – but I’m infinitely more thankful that we did. During that tear-filled counseling session with our pastor, we heard him encourage us with these wise words.
This baby will be the apple of your eye.
Eight Prophetic Words
Those words prophesied our future.
Eight prophetic words. Proclaimed with promise, those words. And you know what?
He couldn’t have been more right.
His Perfect Timing
Truly, when it comes to my grandparenting journey, God has made all things beautiful in his perfect timing. My granddaughter is my sweetie pie, and every moment with her is precious.
To think what I would have missed out on if God had left the timing up to me.
Encouraging intentional adventure with the apple of your eye,
PS: We’re expecting our second grandbaby soon! I plan to continue to memorize scripture with all my grands; however, I might choose a shorter passage or series for the next lofty goal! But, in the beginning, we’ll probably still start with Genesis 1:1. What do you think? Are you memorizing Scripture with your grandchildren?
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Jill NormanJanuary 20, 2017 at 3:14 am
I’m so glad you shared this with me. Highlight of my day. Your grandchildren are so blessed to have you and Mike. Such a wonderful thing to share with your granddaughter. 🙂
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Jackie curlJanuary 9, 2017 at 2:20 am
What a sweet story and awesome idea! I don’t have a grand daughter yet, but I would love to join you, and try to do this with my God Child!
Candy BenoitJanuary 8, 2017 at 10:54 pm
Oh my gosh – Love this so very much Brenda. How wonderful for you and her and truer words have never been spoken that this will be a great investment with returns that will last for generations to come. My heart is warmer having read your blog today. Thank you my friend.
Brenda McDearmonJanuary 8, 2017 at 11:51 pm
Candy, you’re such a sweet friend and faithful encourager. Thank you for your kind words and for reading!
Wanda FinleyJanuary 8, 2017 at 10:51 pm
What a wonderful idea!!! I will try to do the same with my granddaughters and great-granddaughter!!!
Karen WeirJanuary 8, 2017 at 7:04 pm
Brenda your blog really touched me today as I remember struggling with those very same feelings 13 years ago. I can truly say my granddaughter has been the most precious blessing God has ever given me. I love your idea of scripture memorization and I would love to try it with her. You definitely have a gift of encouragement and your blogs are so inspiring. Thank you. And by the way… you’ve had me crying all morning thinking of my little apple of my eye!
Sue JohnsonJanuary 8, 2017 at 3:35 pm
Love Love Love this idea. You are so blessed with this granddaughter but she is also blessed to have you for a Grammie! Thanks for the idea and praying for us all to accomplish it!!
Missy McClureJanuary 8, 2017 at 2:25 pm
I love this message and would love to do the memorization with our grandchildren (now have 4 with another due any moment). I don’t think their parents would let us pay them but we might put it in a savings account for each one! Great plan and such a special way to pour God’s love and His Word into a child!
Brenda McDearmonJanuary 8, 2017 at 3:02 pm
Thanks for commenting, Missy. That’s a great idea about the savings account. I also thought about some way to bind coloring pages into a book, and when we’re together, she and I can reinforce our memorization as we color. Your grandkids are so blessed to have you guys for grandparents. ❤