These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.Deuteronomy 6:6-7
I am always looking for creative ways of having spiritual, theological, biblical and gospel-rich conversations with my daughter. I especially wanted to give her an open forum to ask me any question about God that she might have.
This is a difficult thing to do without the conversation feeling forced. If I just point blank asked her, “Do you have any questions about God?” she would always say no, and fair enough. Not only is that a big question for anyone to just respond to in the moment, she’s also only 5 years old!
Having said that, 5 years olds can be incredibly reflective and curious, and my daughter Dorothy is that and more! So I was so happy when I discovered a little game we play that has inspired some wonderful discussions.
Dot started listening to a podcast on ABC Kids Listen called “Imagine This“. It’s an engaging podcast targeted at little kids, where they answer some scientific question. Now, whenever Dot is interested in some show or activity, she always wants to use imaginative play to act it out. So, I thought I’d see if she wanted to act out doing a podcast where kids ring in and ask a question about God. We called our show… Godcast.
Dot LOVED it! She could make the ringing sound of the phone and invent the name of the child who rang up. And then, she would make up a few questions. That’s where the magic happened.
At first she would ask questions that she knew the answers to, but after a few times, her questions would get deeper and more interesting. Sometimes she would ask something really poignant that philosophers have been wondering about for centuries.
To mix things up, I would also now and then take on the role of being a caller and I would ask a question I was curious to see how she might answer. It has been really insightful to learn not only what questions my daughter has, but what is her current understanding of the Christian faith.
Welcome to Godcast
A week or so ago, I asked Dot if she would like to record this little game we were playing and share it with others. She was delighted to, and so I’ve begun posting them on podbean.
At the time of writing this, we’ve done four episodes, and we’ve covered such questions as:
- Why do we have to read the bible?
- What’s the biggest thing God knows about?
- Did God create himself?
- Why do we sing about God?
- Why do we pray?
- How did God make the birds tweet?
And then, the other night, something even more wonderful happened. Dot asked to play “Godcast” because she had a question about God she personally wanted to ask. It touched me that she knew that I would listen to her questions, make her feel safe about asking them and help her think through the answers in a fun and easily understandable way. And for a Christian dad, that is absolute gold.
If you’re a parent, get creative and experimental in your efforts to teach them the faith. Keep working with your child’s interests and personality and don’t be afraid to be a bit silly along the way.
And as Deuteronomy 6:6-7 encourages us, integrate spiritual conversation with your kids into every part of life. Talk with them about God “when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”
Listen to “Godcast”