Thursday, April 5, 2012

show me truth {with passion, please}

Perhaps it's a touchy subject for some, the idea of "indoctrinating our kids," leading them to believe what we believe.  Is it ok for adults to influence kids like this?

Like it or not, know it or not, adults are continually teaching and influencing kids.   I can remember Ms. Johnson leading my 10th grade class in a discussion of the Holocaust.  Her attitude was "That's just the way it was.  Sad fact of life.  Too bad.  Now it's time to move on..."  

I don't remember being influenced by her passion for the lives of the Jews and all the victims of the Hell's Reich.  But sadly, I was influenced by her dispassion.  It's a sorrow to me that it took me years to read enough and hear enough to move me from too-shallow-a-passion, to fire-in-my-bones on this subject (but I'm blazing now after reading Eric Metaxas' biography of Dietrich Bonhoeffer.)  
The Holocaust should horrify, anger, grieve us.... and deeply so.  It's not ok to pass over the topic like we pass the peas at dinner.   We most certainly plan on indoctrinating our kids with a fierce and furious passion on this subject. 

As for the thought of not wanting to choose beliefs for our kids, but simply letting them grow up to believe whatever they'll choose on their own, that assumes that what we believe is optional, subjective, open to personal opinion.  

But we believe that the truth is true regardless of our opinions about it.  For example:  The Holocaust happened (believe it or not) and it was wrong (even if you're a Nazi).  And because our kids need to know the truth, we will tell them.   We're sure not going to lie to them and say that the truth might not be true, or that they could choose something false and it would be just fine.

Just like we believe the Holocaust happened and that it was wrong, we believe the Bible is True and that it guides us to know what's good and it's not contingent on anyone else's opinions... It's actually, really, absolutely true.  Our kids need the truth, and we will tell them and we want to help them think critically about the world and the Word, to see the truth, to be passionate about God and goodness and to fight against evil.  

And now finally, my very roundabout ramblings bring me here, to this gas can for the fire... a quote from John Piper that sparked these thoughts in me.  Perhaps Piper has also recently read Metaxas' Bonhoeffer biography?  He said this about Hitler and the stories from Germany and WWII Europe that are told by Eric Metaxas in his biography of Bonhoeffer:  

Tell these stories to your children. Tell them with passion. Tell them with tears. Send your children into the world with their eyes sharpened with the bright light of history. Send them ready to name the academic Nietzsches for what they are. Send them with an unflinching Nie wieder! (Never again!) in their hearts.  

(John Piper, "Tell Your Children What Hitler Did.")

Amen.  God help us to do just that.

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