Are you struggling to talk to your kids about the pandemic from a Christian perspective?
When I looked at the clock it was 4:30 a.m. My oldest had crawled into bed after having a nightmare. It was the first time since everything began that one of the kids was deeply affected.
We sat at the table after waking and I listened to him describe a scenario that he knew wasn’t realistic, but was still scary nonetheless. Details of a friend who was using the virus to attack the city, people running panicked, and a need to save his baby sister.
From the beginning, we have been open and honest about the way COVID-19 is affecting our nation and our world. They fully understand why we can’t see family and friends. They know we keep people safe by staying at home.
As parents, we know it too. We understand the importance but we still wrestle with the questions, just like they do.
How can we explain COVID-19 to our kids from a Christian perspective? When the questions arise, how do we respond?
We first need to understand what our relationship with God is. As a Christian, do you believe that He is sovereign and good, even when things are bad? We can’t ask our kids to trust God if we don’t trust Him.
Is This a Test From God?
There is a lot of debate about whether or not this is a test or a warning from God. There are a few factors that play into that question. We’re not God and cannot know the things He knows. We also cannot count this as a test or warning without seeing the other side of this pandemic. Those are details that aren’t important but what our focus should be when that question arises is: am I spending time strengthening my relationship with Christ and do I read in His Word when looking for answers?
Why Would God Let This Happen?
If God is good, why would He let something bad like this happen? Sometimes in order for us to experience good, we also have to experience bad. We wouldn’t know what the definition of good is, if we don’t know what the definition of bad is. God might be allowing this to happen because as many of us are filled with anxiety and fear, He uses this opportunity to show His love, comfort, and peace through it all.
Calming Fear and Anxiety
If you don’t pray with your kids, through this pandemic is a great time to start. The prayers don’t have to be whimsical or wordy. They can be simple just like talking to a friend. Encourage your kids to not get hung up on doing it right, but being open and honest. God can handle the doubt, the questions, the sadness, the fear.
As Paul points out in Philippians, God’s peace will guard our heart and mind as we live in Christ. That means, we are coming to God with all of our feelings and trusting Him through the ups and downs.
As Christian parents, our peace and comfort lies in the truth that Jesus offers us eternal life, where there will not be disease and suffering (Revelations 21:4) and that He uses all things to work together for His good (Romans 8:28). We can use this opportunity to help them trust in God, when everything feels like it’s out of control. We trust Him because we know He is in control through it all.
How are you handling this pandemic from a Christian perspective? For more thoughts on faith during a pandemic, check out Keeping Faith When Your Place of Worship is Closed.