By Jewell Johnson
“Mom? Janet and I are getting a divorce.” The voice on the phone paused.
“No . . . no!” I shouted at our son. “Something must be done.”
My husband and I had sensed for some time that our son and daughter-in-law were having marital problems, yet we were not prepared for this news.
Although we lived 800 miles from our son and his family, we immediately flew to their city to try to help reconcile the couple. Our efforts were unsuccessful. Our hearts especially grieved for our grandchildren. What will become of 4-year-old Lisa, and Blaine, age 2?
Supporting Our Grandchildren
Through the next tumultuous years we attempted to support our grandchildren; we sent them gifts and cards for their birthdays and at Christmas. We frequently called them.
But it proved to be an almost impossible task. Miles separated us. We were saddened when for a time our son, angry because of the chaos he had created, would not allow us to speak to the children.
For Lisa and Blaine, the home had failed. I hoped our son and his ex-wife would involve the children in the programs the church offered. This did not happen. As Lisa and Blaine were tossed from one parent to the other, church attendance was not a priority.
Prayer: Our Only Recourse
In our struggle to know how to help, we realized our only recourse was prayer; we could pray for our grandchildren. We placed the children’s pictures in a prominent place to remind us to pray for them daily. Among the requests we made, one prayer surfaced repeatedly: “God, place caring people around Lisa and Blaine, people willing to step forward to serve as their mentors.”
A Haven for Lisa
Now, years later, we recognize how God answered our prayer. Our granddaughter’s junior high French teacher, sensing Lisa’s unstable home situation, took a special interest in her. The teacher asked her to help grade papers after school and took Lisa to lunch for special occasions. The parents continued to fight, court cases ensued, but God created a haven for Lisa in a classroom at school. Our prayers were answered as the teacher served as a mentor and friend to our granddaughter.
A Mentor for Blaine
When our grandson was in sixth grade, a friend invited him to a Christian club that met before school. The friend’s father picked up Blaine and took the boys to the meeting. The leader of the club led the students in a Bible study.
One evening we received a call. “Grandma, guess what happened to me today?”
“What is it?” I said.
Blaine went on to tell me how the leader of the club had extended an invitation to the young people to accept Christ as their Savior. Our grandson had responded.
We now enjoy a good relationship with our grandchildren, who are well-adjusted Christian teenagers. Their father, with whom they live, attends church with his children.
Lisa and Blaine see their mother frequently.
When the door closed for us to have a positive influence on our grandchildren, when their home was in disarray, we prayed and our prayers were answered. Over the years, God found willing servants—Christian mentors—who stepped alongside two bewildered children, giving them stability and helping guide them to faith in Christ.
Jewell Johnson is a resident of Arizona, a housewife, mother, grandmother, author, and retired registered nurse.