Monday, October 19, 2009

Where is your God now, Jack Skellington?

Brooke was watching 'The Nightmare Before Christmas' yesterday morning while I was playing at church all day. She likes that movie a lot. I'm glad, it's one of my favorites. Anyway, after I had been home for a few minutes, Jenny asked me if I had checked facebook yet today. I had not. She said I should check out what she put earlier, so I did.  Here's what awaited me:

This is the sort of comment that gets an affirming reaction from people. I mean, Jenny got comments saying that we're raising her right, or deep stuff for a 4 year old, ya know, that sort of thing. Good comments made by people who are trying to give a compliment to our parenting.

I was not of the same attitude.

I didn't have the energy/mindset to write this out in length at the time, so I only put something quick out about how I'm displeased with the conclusion Brooke came to.

She's I'll cut her a little slack...JUST THIS ONCE!

Apparently I was embarrassed to talk to Brooke about this with another adult in the room, so I waited until Jenny went to the store to bring it up with her. I know, I'm very mature in my parental capacity.

Anyway, once I was alone with the big sweetie, I asked her about the movie she watched earlier. I asked her what she said about God being in the movie. She said that she didn't think that God was in the movie. So I asked her why not. And, as Jenny's FB status would support, she said because there's lots of bad things in the movie and God didn't stop them.

I'm assuming that 'lots of bad things' has something to do with these lovable little scamps

I asked Brooke why she thought this, and she said that she was learning in her class (at church) that God can do anything. And she said that if God can do anything, and God is good, then there shouldn't be bad things happening in the movie.

She's such a cute little logical thing.

But here I am, confronted with this argument from a 4 year old. It wasn't even the classic "why do bad things happen?" question. This was more than that. This wasn't a question, she has moved beyond the question into a conclusion. She had answered the question and was quite content with the explanation. Pretty simple to her, since God can do anything, and God is good, and bad things were happening in the movie, it must mean that God doesn't exist in the movie.

This cannot fly.

So I tried to explain to Brooke as best I could that just because God can do anything, and that God is good, and wants good things to happen doesn't mean that bad things won't happen.

We talked about the bad things happening in the movie, and why they happened. We talked about people deliberately choosing to do the bad things, and God wasn't going to swoop in and stop them from doing it. We talked about why he wasn't going to do it. We talked about God loving all of us, and wanting us to make good decisions and to do good things.

And we had to talk about bad things happening in real life too. That this whole thing isn't a 'movie only' theology. This is how God works in real life. That even though she hasn't had bad things happen to her (well, nothing seriously bad...other than running out of lolly pops or something), this doesn't mean that bad things don't happen.  We talked about how people have bad things happen to them lots of times, and how sometimes people do mean or bad things because they don't listen to God and do the good things that he wants them to do.

She seemed to understand, and she seemed interested in what we were talking about. For the most part.

Daddy has a tendency to talk too much.

I am really trying to catch/correct things like this when they come up. I don't want her growing up with an idea of God like this. An idea that God can only exist in a world where nothing bad happens.

Because bad things do happen.

A lot.

But God still does exist, even through the bad things.

A little much for a 4 year old? I don't think so. She started it.