December 2010

So What About that Burning Bush?

One more thing many parents struggle with is perhaps the most frightening, and definitely the most important area of possible "restriction." I'm not talking about monsters, nor bad examples. I'm talking about the terrifying reality of God's pure holiness. Our kids, like us, know deep down just how sinful they are. Until God saves them, they automatically feel guilt when they disobey, steal, lie, or sin in other ways. Before my daughter was one, I saw it in her big blue eyes-- as she looked at me in the rear-view mirror immediately after pulling off her hairbow as she was instructed not to do. Mention "sin" in a preschool classroom and you immediately get blame-shifting; stories of how bad their brothers and sisters are... so Garden of Eden. Our kids know that they are guilty sinners.

So What About that Grouchy Ladybug?

Yesterday we talked about whether it is truly wise to restrict children's "interaction" with scary situations via story (ghosts, goblins, monsters, dragons, bad guys, etc.) I've known other children who were similarly restricted, not so much about scary things, but about "getting the wrong idea" from reading about disobedient, or disrespectful children. I was one of those kids, actually. As is my habit, this topic has been stewing in my brain for the past few days... As parents, is it wise to let our children see, hear, or read about those who act foolishly? What does Scripture say about this?

What About that Scary Ghost?

As parents, is it wise to let our children see, hear, or read about "scary" things? What does Scripture say about this? ;The Bible is plenty full of scary situations-- not from pretend creatures like ghosts and goblins, but from very real-life evil men and angels.  Fear in children is natural. As G. K. Chesterton put it,

“Fairy tales are more than true – not because they tell us dragons exist, but because they tell us dragons can be beaten.”

Some of you might be at this point shaking your heads, thinking "what the heck is she saying? Dragons do NOT exist, and the LAST thing I want is to fill my child's head with a new fear over something that doesn't even exist." Think about it this way: to a child, so many things are frightening, most of them involving potential physical harm. They're scared of stuffed cows, of quick-moving dogs, of strangers, of the dark.  One day they'll outgrow all those fears by bullying or avoiding them;  they'll learn that they are bigger than those things, or that they're so improbable that they don't need to think about them. But ;unless they've been taught not just to avoid or bully fears, but to face them, they'll "graduate" to fears of other things-- fear of failure, of rejection, of humiliation, of being alone, of being wrong.

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