Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Jesus Helps Mom With The Dishes

This morning I had a intellectual discussion about God's omnipresence with my four year old daughter. She and I were having breakfast while Mom took Riker to the bus. She was telling me about a scary dream she had been having and I told her that maybe we should pray and ask Jesus to take it away from her. She thought this might be a good idea. She also told me that Jesus was everywhere and that He wanted to help Mom with the dishes. Wow, dramatic change of direction! I gently pointed out to her that God was everywhere but not necessarily doing everything. She just looked at me like I had no idea what I was talking about.

Later as I chuckled and thought about it I realized how difficult it is for children to grasp some of these heady theological concepts (and how hard it is for us - OK, me - to explain them). For instance it really bothers Trinity that she can't hear Jesus talking to her. "I can talk to Jesus, but I can't ever hear Him Daddy . . ." says Trinity looking sad. How can I tell her that so many other Christians have struggled with this fact as well? And that many struggle with just feeling His presence in their lives? Instead I try to reassure her that God loves us and that while some believers do audibly hear his voice, many instead hear him through his Word and through their lives. And that's OK.

Another thing that's seems difficult to get through to her is the whole Dieing/Salvation/Heaven/Hell thing. Trinity is sometimes worried about dieing and even though we've reassured her that Heaven will be a much better place, she is still concerned and has many questions about it. Honestly, I find it difficult to tell her about salvation in these instances because I don't want her to make a decision for Christ simply based on the fact that she is scared of death or hell. The Bible seems to talk about salvation as so much more then this! If she was only a teenager (or I was wiser in talking to children) it would be a lot easier. Sigh.

One thing I do like about these conversations is that they help me to think about faith a little more honestly and concretely. Have you had any deep or comical experiences in trying to explain theological truths to children? How did it go? If you have any pointers for me I'd love to hear them!


Jay Boaz said...

Maybe you could get some advice from the people who run your children's program at your church?

Anonymous said...

You could tell her that Jesus helps Mommy do the dishes by giving her health, energy and strength.

Anonymous said...

My favorite is when Calvin and Eliot come up with these really inquisite theological discussions...AT BEDTIME!!!!! I would say it tops the list in stall tactics, because mommy obviously has a hard time saving it for later, afterall, my kids want to talk about God!

Jacquie :o)

Anonymous said...

6 year old Cole, who has only ever been to church once in his life was reading the Christmas story a few weeks ago and asked me who Jesus' dad was. It was an interesting experience trying to explain that to him.
And then there is his 3 year old brother asking me what redeemer means.
Praise the Lord they are asking questions...but sometimes I wish they had someone else to ask!! :)