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When Kids Ask Hard Questions

April 11, 2012

When our kids ask us hard questions, it can feel like a double whammy.  Not only is it a hard question – it’s our kid who is revealing our ignorance or uncertainty.

I still remember the first time my son realized I was not all-powerful.  It involved my shocking inability to re-peel a banana and the look of disappointment on his face was simultaneously hilarious and heart-breaking.  I would have given anything in that moment to re-peel the banana.

It’s just as well no fairy-godmother appeared to grant my wish.  My son needs to learn that I am not all-powerful and I need to allow him to learn it.  We both need to come to terms with the fact that I can not always shape his world into a safe and certain bubble.  There are things I can not do; things I do not know; things out of even my long reach.  I do not have simple and certain answers to questions about death or evil or the nature of Christ.  What I do have, though, is my genuine desire to learn and to share and to hear what he might think.  Never estimate the power and the value of an answer that begins with “Well…I wonder if…”.

Sometimes, though, having our limits revealed is hard because it reveals an incompleteness we’d rather not have to acknowledge – and perhaps should take steps to address.  If we are dissatisfied with our answers for such questions as “why do I have to go to church?” or “why do we say grace – my friends don’t?” it might suggest that we need to spend some time answering them for ourselves first.

When kids ask hard questions – seize the opportunity to ask it of yourself.  And rejoice that you get to share your life with such a curious, thoughtful little soul.

If you’d like a little more guidance, join us for our next Family Saturday!

 When Kids Ask Hard Questions
workshop and discussion for parents and caregivers
Saturday, April 21st, 10 -1 (lunch included)
in the Undercroft
activities and crafts for children

RSVP to Rhonda by Thursday, April 19th
free will donations accepted

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