On Saturday I took my seven-year-old granddaughter to a movie. We saw The Croods while eating Junior Mints and sipping Hi-C fruit punch. The most memorable part of the experience, however, was a conversation we had on the way to the theater.
“Papa, did you hear about the man who was hurting people with bombs?”
“Yes, I did.”
“Did you know he was hiding in a boat while the police were looking for him?”
“Yes, I saw that on the news.”
“He was very dangerous.”
“Yes, I know. I’m glad they caught him.”
“I don’t ever want to be a policeman.”
“Because I don’t want to get killed.”
I tried to explain to her that not all police officers get killed. Some do, but most don’t. I also told her that it was okay if she didn’t want to be a police officer, but that we should be thankful for those people who do. They are very brave and they protect us. She said, “I know. I want to be brave, I just don’t want to get killed.”
And then she said, “Can we talk about something else? This stuff makes me nervous.”
I’ve since tried to remember what my life was like at seven. I’m confident I knew nothing of terrorists and bombs and mad killers running loose. All I knew of crime was George Reeves in his Superman tights busting through walls and knocking the crooks’ heads together.
What a different world it is for our children.
Those of us who are parents and grandparents need to rededicate ourselves to teaching our kids about Jesus, his love, and the hope of heaven. It’s the only way to counter-balance the darkness that is so cruelly thrust upon them. Even the most dedicated parents cannot completely insulate their children from the cold realities of a world gone crazy, but we can make sure that they hear the other side of the story.
Psalm 78:4 says, “We will not hide these truths from our children; we will tell the next generation about the wonderful deeds of the Lord, about his power and his mighty wonders.”
If ever there was some great parental advice for the current generation of parents and grandparents, that’s it. While Fox News and CNN are broadcasting our daily nightmares, let our mouths be broadcasting the power and the love of God, and the hope that comes with it.
For further reflection read Psalm 91:14-16 and 94:22-23.