February 22

Written by Bill Grandi on February 22nd, 2022

Never underestimate the power of influence. In particular, early influence.

First, a little background. I grew up in a somewhat divided home. My mom wanted to be a missionary but then she met my dad.  I told her once she fulfilled her dream to be a missionary: she raised 4 boys who love Jesus. She did that in spite of some very poor cooperation from my dad. Not that he was antagonistic, an atheist, or anything like that. He never once told us we couldn’t go to church (except when the weather was bad during a Pennsylvania winter).  He wasn’t even uncooperative. Over the long haul his faith just wasn’t very important to him. To my mom, though, her faith was everything. And she did all she could to teach us and to take us to church.

My biggest influence? My grandfather, mom’s dad. Those early years spent with him, walking to church with him were like gold to me. Lots of teaching went into those 3-4 mile walks.

My mind went back to those early days this morning as I read 2 Timothy 3: 14-17: “You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith, which is in Christ Jesus.” (You can read the rest on your own). Paul was reminding Timothy of his upbringing and that from childhood he knew the Scriptures. He tells us elsewhere who was responsible for that. Not his father. His mother and grandmother.

I’m grateful for my mother and my grandfather’s faith. I’m grateful they passed it on to me. Never underestimate the influence of early and consistent teaching.

“Father, thank You for that early influence. Help me to continue pouring my faith into my daughters, my grandson and other young people.”


6 Comments so far ↓

  1. What a wonderful story, Bill. Makes me wish I’d had someone to really pour God’s love into my life when I was young. Treasure those memories!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Thanks Martha. the really cool things is you have been doing that with your granddaughters.

  2. Ryan S says:

    My early influence was a bit different. No Sunday morning walks or drives. Rarely a mention of God or Jesus growing up. In my early adult years, I do have fond memories of sitting in a Hardee’s once a week in Terre Haute, Indiana before heading to work studying the New Testamet with a friend and pastor who wanted to take the time to see me grow as a Christian. Remembering those times raises the desire in me to buckle down even more and not let those early “lessons” go to waste.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      We all have different stories Ryan, as you know. I think it is very commendable that this pastor wanted to spend time with you, helping your grow and mature in your faith. No matter how we must not let the lessons go to waste.

  3. Ed says:

    My parents were both Catholic. However church was on special occasions only. My Dad taught me early on one lesson it would take years to learn: Never lie.

    He was however, very happy to see that I had become a Christian at such a young age, after a rough start of course.

    But knowing the kind man he was, I didn’t know the kind man he was until years later after his passing. And the great influence he has on those around him.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      It is nice to hear of a legacy of how your father was after his death. Sort of makes you more “proud” of him. Carry that legacy on Ed.