Friday, 26 November 2010

Three-year-old theology: on God, monsters, and jellyfish

An intriguing theological discussion with my three-year-old boy tonight, just as he was drifting off to sleep:

Boy: "I need to sleep up in your bed, or the monsters under the house will come and get me. They'll come from far away."

Dad: "Are you sure there are monsters under the house?"

Boy: "Yes, and they will get me."

Dad: "You know, you're very safe now that we have a dog. What do you think Kola [our puppy] will do if he sees a monster under the house?"

Boy: "He will eat them."

Dad: "Exactly. Or maybe just chase them away."

Boy: "And they would run away."

Dad: "Yep. Because there's one thing monsters are really scared of..."

Boy: "Jellyfish."

Dad: "Jellyfish...? Right! And they're also scared of dogs, especially Kola."

Boy: "Kola will protect me."

Dad: "And you know who else will protect you?"

Boy: "Daddy. And mummy. And myself."

Dad: "And one more person: God always watches over you."

Boy: "Does God watch the Wiggles too?"

Dad: "I guess so. God sees everything in the world, and God cares for you."

Boy: "Yes, God cares for me. But God kills his self."

Dad: "Um, are you sure about that...?"

Boy: (Nodding sadly) "Yes, he kills his self."

Dad: "Well... God sends Jesus to us, and Jesus died for us."

Boy: "But is God scared of the monsters? Or just the baddies?"

Dad: "No, God's not scared of anything. God is greater than anything else."

Boy: "Is God as big as the ceiling? As big as the clouds? Bigger than the clouds?"

Dad: "Bigger than anything."

Boy: "So if God came into our house, he would be squashed and die. He will be dying forever."

Dad: "OK, go to sleep now."

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