Why God Matters. To Parents Specifically.
Before I begin. To all those drivers who made it take 45 minutes for me to travel five miles on the highway this morning, simply because there was a car stranded on the shoulder: you should all strongly consider sterilization. However, I did get to hear two Ke$ha songs during that time. So I have that going for me.
Obviously the title of this post is glaringly obvious. God matters for lots of reasons, and we can all name them. Well, maybe not all of us (I’m looking at you Stephen Hawking). But the specific answer I’m looking for was inadvertently brought up yesterday by, yes you guessed it, liberal talk radio. Specifically, the radio host asked “how do you raise a child to be moral in an immoral and unethical world?” The question didn’t immediately resonate with me, because I know how I teach my kids about what’s right and wrong…I simply point to the Bible. But then I started to listen to the teachings of the callers. The first caller said he tells his 9 year old daughter to “follow her heart” because it is “intrinsically good.” I immediately questioned the wisdom in the such an instruction, because it will inevitably result in his 14 daughter getting knocked up in the back seat of Johnny’s red Trans-Am because JOHNNY LOVES ME AND WE’RE GOING TO BE TOGETHER FOREVER AND THERE’S NOTHING YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT!
The second caller said he just tells his kids to follow the golden rule. When asked what he tells his kids when other people don’t follow the golden rule and seem to prosper by such tomfoolery, the caller said he deals with each situation on a case by case basis…which simply means his response largely depends on how his hemorrhoids are feeling that day. It was at this point that I determined these two fathers were morons. But then, after taking a break to sing along to “Save a horse, ride a cowboy,” I realized it wasn’t moronism, but a total lack of authority for any of The Man’s stupid rules.
While the question presented was “how do you raise a child in an immoral world,” the more precise question, I think, is “how do you teach a child to discern right from wrong when you can’t base your own values on anything solid?” How does a non-believer justify his rules to his children? Stealing is wrong. Why? Because it’s taking somebody else’s stuff without asking. But the government does it…I kid, I kid. Seriously though, how do you answer the question without grounding it in something immovable? I don’t think you can.
There is no answer outside of God. God made us. Therefore he calls the shots. Is this oversimplification? Depends on whether you stayed awake in Theology class (which I did not). Here’s the point though…I’m not sure it’s possible to teach a kid morals or ethics or how to simply not be a jerk without pointing to an ultimate authority. Otherwise, you’re simply passing on your own moral relativism, which only works if you’re G.I Joe, or something (knowing is half the battle).
Oh, and to my wife: I wasn’t really singing along to “save a horse, ride a cowboy.” I find such overt sexual references degrading to women. Which is wrong.