Have you seen the recent commercial featuring a grandfather and his “dream car”? Watch it here:

Now, sharing this video is not an endorsement of this company other than to say I appreciate the powerful message for grandparents. But it raises some interesting ideas.

Did you have dreams about what you wanted to do during your later years? Some people look forward to retiring or cutting back on working hours so they can travel more. Some think about moving to a warmer climate so they can relax and do things they enjoy. Some, like this grandfather, start planning for a big purchase, like a car, house or boat.

Usually those “dreams” are conceived before we fully grasp what grandchildren will do to us—emotionally, maybe even spiritually. Those incredible grandkids, and the joy they bring to our lives, have a way of shifting our priorities. To help our grandchildren, we might give up one dream because we’re convinced there’s a better dream to pursue, and it involves blessing them in some way.

And then some grandparents take it a step further. They sacrifice all self-indulgent pursuits during their retirement years because they are needed, and they take in a grandchild full-time or take on a major role in caring for the child. (And they are also giving up many of the usual joys of grandparenthood, because they can’t enjoy their grandkids for a few hours or a few days and then send them home.)

Giving up on a dream you’ve had for many years might feel difficult at first, but remember that you’re trading it for something better. You still have an important role to play in blessing, teaching, encouraging, and loving your grandkids.

I honor all of you who have said, like this granddad, “This is my dream now” and found new ways to invest in future generations.

I encourage you to talk through your “dreams” with your spouse or another grandparent. Ask each other: Is there more we can do for our grandkids?

How have your grandkids changed your dreams? Please share your thoughts and experiences on our Facebook page.