The Jennings Family

Husband, Dad, Papa, and Pastor Dennis Jennings

A Letter to My Granddaughter

Megan, Ben, and baby Melana

February 25, 2010

Dear Melana,

We haven’t met yet, but I’m your granddad and I am very happy you have finally arrived.  We have prayed for you and your mom and dad since we first heard you were coming into our family.  I think there are some things you need to know about these people who love you so much.

Your mom is God’s gift not only to your daddy, but also to our whole family.  She is a sweet young lady that I met when she first got to college.  I never dreamed she would one day be your mother, but I am so glad she is.  She is an example of a Christian lady and is such a good wife to your dad.  God blessed you by putting you into the arms of your mom to love you and teach you the most important things you will ever need to know.

I was there the night your dad was born just as he was there for you.   He was also my first child, as you are his.  You are going to have a lot of fun with your dad.  He likes music, something he came by naturally from his grandmothers, both moms and me.  I’m sure you will grow up with him singing and playing for you, and I can’t wait to hear you singing with him, too.   Your daddy has always had a tender heart, and I know you will be the apple of his eye and the joy of his heart.  You are mighty blessed, little girl, to have these two exceptional people as your loving parents.

By the way, your parents are in the ministry.  That means that your dad is a preacher.  You won’t understand that right away, but your mom and dad will start teaching you about Someone they love even more than they love each other before you will even understand what they are saying.  That “Someone” is Jesus Christ, and He is the One who formed you in your mom’s belly.  He knew about you before any of us, and He will be your best friend one day!  Today you were born into our family.  One day, I am already praying, you will also be born into His.

Your mom and dad gave you very special names.  Your middle name you share with both your mom and her mom.  You don’t understand it yet, but you have been greatly honored in this.  Your mom and your Grandma Smith have given you a heritage of faithfulness and godliness.

Your first name, Melana, is a very special gift, not only to you, but to your Grandma Jennings and your other grandma that you won’t get to meet until you get to heaven, and to me.  You see, the first part of your name, Mel, is after Melanie Evans Jennings, your dad’s first mom.  She left us early to go to heaven, when your father was just a little boy, but her influence in his life will be passed on to you.  She was a godly mom to your dad and I still see the things she taught him making a difference in his life today.  Yes, though you will not meet her while you are here, I am sure that you will love her because of her legacy.  She has given you a whole family in Texas that will be a special blessing in your life.

The “ana” part of your name came from your grandma named Jana, who became your dad’s mom a little while after his first mom went to be with Jesus.  She has always talked about having a little girl to spoil, and you are going to love it, I’m sure.  I get to live with her, and she keeps life interesting for sure.   She plays with little girls all the time at church, and even has some over for tea parties once in a while.  I can’t wait to see the two of you together.  It is hard for me to hold back the tears as I think about the two of you having fun together.

Your Uncle Shad is your dad’s brother.  He has been as excited as anybody about you getting here.  He and your dad have always been friends as well as brothers, and you are blessed to have him in your life.  He will see you when you are less than two days old.  I will have to wait a few weeks, but it is just like him to get to see you first.  He will make you laugh a lot and will show you what it means to serve others and the Lord unselfishly.

You have lots of other family members that can’t wait to love on you when they can – grandparents, great grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins…one thing you won’t lack is people who love you.  They already do and they haven’t even met you yet.

And me, well… I’m your granddad.  I’m a preacher like your dad.  You were born less than an hour ago, and already I love you with all my heart.  More than anything tonight, I want to see what you look like, to hold you, and sing silly songs to you.

My sweet little Melana, I am promising you tonight that I will pray for you every day.  I will pray for your parents to have wisdom to love you enough to discipline you.  While it is hard for me to imagine now, I know that you were born a sinner.  So I will pray that you will receive Christ as your own personal Savior at the earliest possible moment that you understand.

Melana, God made you special.  There is no one else like you.  He has a wonderful plan for your life, and I can’t wait to see what He will do with you.  Your life is going to make a difference.  I count it the highest privilege to be a part of your life.  You have forever changed mine, and we haven’t even met yet.  And I can’t wait!

I love you.


  1. Dennis,
    It’s not cool to make a 300lb grown man blubber like a baby at work! Congrats on being a Granddad. Since I was Ben’s RA does that make me Melana’s Grand-RA?
    Sam Rogian

  2. This is a treasure for a lifetime! Thanks for taking the time to be such a blessing to Melana, and also to every other person that will ever read this! What a great family! May God continue to bless!

  3. Very special! – Thanks for sharing.

  4. Pastor, you and miss Jana are going to be the most wonderful, Godly grandparents that this precious little girl could have ever asked for. We’re so happy for you and your family! Congratulations to you all! 🙂

  5. Awesome, Thanks for sharing this with us. Very neat!!! Melana will just love to read this when she get’s older.

  6. What a beautiful letter! I could hardly read it through all the tears…..I can imagine Melana growing up with this being read to her even before she can read and reading it her self until it’s tattered and torn and unreadable. So you may as well have it framed and put on the wall at her level as a child and move it up the wall as she grows……You are a special family. pray Gods riches blessings on all of you. We love you…

  7. Dear Pastor, I am POSITIVE that Melana will TREASURE this letter for the rest of her life. My grandma (dad’s mom) wrote me a letter like this when I was born, and I have it framed. Congratulations to you and your family!!! 🙂

  8. What a precious letter to your granddaugher. Congrats to you and Jana. You have a love for children but there is “nothing” like a grandchild. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy her as much as you can. They grow up so fast.

  9. What a wonderful letter to our precious little Melana. This is something she will always cherish. I have already started praying for her salvation and her future husband. She is lucky to have so many loving Christian family members who are concerned about her life.
    Thank you for sharing

  10. Melana truly is blessed to have this letter and I have been blessed and challenged by reading it. Thank you for sharing it! We are so happy for you ! Congratulations!

  11. Melana truly is blessed to have this letter and I have been blessed and challenged by reading it. Thank you for sharing it! We are so happy for you ! Congratulations!

  12. Hey Brother,

    What a wonderful message for this precious angel…..I will have Pam read it, I know she will be overwhelmed by your heart that you have shared….again to both you and Jana you are “Now” truly blessed…now go have fun with her…..

  13. Dennis,
    I am so thankful that the LORD has blessed me with the privilege of knowing you and your family basically since birth. What an honor to witness the legacy each of you have worked to live! I look forward to witnessing more with the addition of Melana; thank you for sharing your heart. Love you all!

  14. Dennis & Jana, Ben & Megan,

    First of all, congratulations on the new addition to your family. What a blessing to have shared such a wonderful message. It’s hard to write this note as the tears of joy roll down my cheeks from reading such beautiful words. This brings precious memories to me of Mattie’s birth and that moment of utter joy that you can nenver explain to anyone; a joy that only God can give you over such a miracle.

    God bless you all and we look forward to some day meeting this precious little girl. Thank you for sharing a bit of your love for your new granddaughter.

  15. Bro. Jennings, thank you for sharing this precious letter for Melana with us as well. What a wonderful gift to give your first grand baby! She is a part of a very special family. We love you all! Take care!

  16. Dennis ,
    What a sweet letter. Your right, she is a blessing and has been born to a very special set of parents and into a very loving extended family also. She is beautiful. Congrats Granddaddy. (can’t wait for a holiday get together to get to hold her)

  17. Well done, friend. By the way, I’m sitting here at Panera and the waiter is looking at me funny. Good thing I’m by myself or he’d think someone dumped me.

  18. How am I supposed to work the rest of the day with mascara running down my face? That is the most beautiful letter a grandad could ever write to his new little granddaughter.

    Congratulations to all of you! What a beautiful baby girl!

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