How do I answer their questions?

A friend relayed the following Heart-thumping-What-should-I-say-Yikes-I’m-stumped-Situation:

She was reading to her preschoolers the story of Noah’s Ark and they asked her:

Where did all of the other people go?

(Meaning: those who weren’t on the ark.)

This mom wondered: How should I answer!??
(While thoughts swirled in her head: what if my reply causes my kids to become fearful of rain storms!)

Hmmmm… There is always the response of answering a question with a question:

Where do you suppose they went?

Would that work in this situation?
How would you have answered this question?

Would you have explained that…

  • The people were very bad. (And left it at that.)
  • Or…The people were very bad and as punishment it rained and rained. It rained so hard there was a flood. (And left it at that.) Or
  • Or would you have gotten more specific and said… The people were very bad; they were so bad that God decided to wipe them all out and so he created a flood.

I think that I would have liked to add a couple of questions to this conversation:

Do you suppose that all of that rain was really rain or was it God’s tears?
Why do you suppose God was crying?
Do you suppose this story is meant to teach us to obey God?

You know your kids best. What would you have answered? (Please share your answers!)

Photo credit: Josh Madison
Licensed under: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0

Talking about disaster

Helpers work at the Haiti earthquake

With the earthquake in Haiti on our minds, I refer you to this excellent article by Thomas Haller and Chick Moorman on talking to your kids about this tragedy (click on the words below).

Explaining World Tragedy to Children

I love how the authors of this excellent article (as well as numerous books about parenting) say to…

…encourage your children to look for the helpers. Helpers always come.

If you donate to relief efforts include your children in the check writing or key-board-clicking. Talk about what helpers you’ve had in your life. (Has anyone ever brought you a casserole?)

Ask them to be on the look-out for helpers in their lives. Point out when someone lets you cut in line with your car (or when you allow someone else in!) Teach them the language: “I’m being a helper” or “There’s a helper!”

As Haller and Moorman say,

Let them see and be love in action.

Where have you seen love in action?


Photo credits:
Helpers at the Jan. 2010 earthquake in Haiti, originally uploaded by the United Nations Development Programme, who licensed this photo on Flickr under a Creative Commons License.

Are you seeing ads? They are not from me! They are placed by WordPress, who otherwise offers a free platform from which to share lots of good-ness. If you see an inappropriate ad, please report it to Include the URL, the date/time the ad appeared, and a screenshot of the ad.