How should we talk to our kids about today’s events?
You have noticed. I have noticed. We have noticed together. The world is in disarray. COVID-19 sent us into a long, depressed state of isolation. The ongoing events of racial injustice have the country (thankfully) in an upheaval. While we as adults may understand the latest news coverage and social media posts, our children may not. Should we shield them from the latest events? If not, how should we talk to them about what’s happening today?
We can be cautious at times with sharing the ‘full’ truth with our children. We might think we would scare them if they knew the truth. I often think of the story of Jesus rescuing God’s people when I think about how best to deliver difficult news to my children. As a father of 6, I want my children to understand, know, and fall in love with Jesus. To really appreciate Jesus, we must first understand our brokenness, our sin. When we see this brokenness and how it has separated us from God, we can begin to appreciate God’s great rescue plan.
We were not worthy of rescue. In fact, Ephesians 2:1-3 tells us that we were followers of the world, doomed for destruction. Yet God, (Ephesians 2:4) being rich in mercy, sent Jesus to live in our place, die in our place, and be raised from the dead, so that we might be rescued from our sin and adopted as children in the family of God. To appreciate this good news, we first had to fully understand the bad news. We were hopeless. Doesn’t this sound analogous to the events of today?
So, how should we approach tough news with our children? With honesty and full transparency. Start a conversation. In 2020, information is at the fingertips of most every American. Our children will see the latest YouTube commercial, TV show, or social media post. They will have conversations with their friends. Truth for our children will be defined by others if we don’t speak up. So, let’s take charge. Let’s share how sin is the root cause of all the brokenness we see. Let’s share with our children that racial injustice and hate exist and show them that, even when we don’t see it, those tendencies can exist in us. We can share the brokenness of COVID-19 and how it has taken the lives of loved ones long before the world thought it was their time. We can help our children see why. Sin has broken this world. Sin has broken us. Sin has broken our children. When they see this, they can begin finding hope in Jesus. He will matter more. What is the answer to racism? Changed hearts and perspective through a relationship with Jesus Christ. What is the answer to death? Hope in the resurrection of Jesus and new life through the Spirit of God.
We should keep speaking up and standing for justice. One day, things will be made new in Jesus. Jesus is greater than any scary news.
Written by Jake Weihrauch, CCC Kids Director