True love is a work-in-progress that takes the attention of adults who care about how kids grow up—whether they are safe, whether they are learning effectively, whether they are cared for emotionally and practically. I met Jackie and her two elementary-aged granddaughters at church. Their beautiful little family is work-in-progress, driven by a calm and brilliant grandmother, and watched-over and guarded carefully by my tribe of believers.
The girls’ mom and dad are in town, although the parents have substantial challenges. Both of them love those beautiful girls, but there are decent reasons why Jackie is the primary stability for the kids. She’s the one who can get them to the doctors, the counselors, and who can assure that the kids are up to speed with their homework. Their other grandmother is helping too. I watched the younger granddaughter as she did her math homework; she was so engaged and productive. You could see the pride of accomplishment in every right answer.
The girls have fallen in love with my buddy. Tim is a dad to two grown daughters. the husband of Julie, and a career safety officer. Tim is a big, strapping guy whose heart is instantly softened in the presence of kids. He takes both girls seriously, talks to them frequently and it’s him that they run to in joy. Talk about a place where kids are protected and safe… It’s a singularly good choice, and I’m so hoping that this great, good man will imprint on their growing psyches. Here’s what you look for: You look for men who respect you; you look for men with appropriate actions, you look for men who really like you, who look you in the eye and talk straight with you.
But here is the thing to me: Jackie has such maturity, such kindness in her voice, such depth of love, for those two sterling children, such wisdom; she’s a walking, talking embodiment of deep, responsive, responsible love. It makes me so proud of grandmas.