Recently, my youngest daughter asked a great question. She asked, “Dad, where’s my money?” She was asking about the cash gift she had received for her birthday—that I had deposited into her bank account. I’m not sure if you’ve ever tried to explain where money lives to a child who’s recently opened a bank account. But, it’s not easy.
The talk quickly turned to, “Dad, if I had $1 million dollars, could I go to the bank and get it all out right now?” To which I said, “Well, there’s probably a limit on how much you can withdraw per day.” This didn’t give my daughter confidence in her new bank. After answering several follow-up questions and a lengthy discussion about Fort Knox, I assured her that her five dollars was not only federally insured, but also insured by her dad. Kids often ask the big questions that us adults don’t. We need to think through the big questions so we have answers—for ourselves and for our kids. If our kids don’t have the answers to the big questions, they are likely to feel alone, lost, and wander through life without purpose—so will you. Here are 4 critical questions worth answering as a dad.
Question #1: Where did you come from?
Answering this question ultimately answers whether you are an accident or made by God. I believe God created us. Knowing where you came from helps you realize you have worth, that you matter, but also that every other individual has value.
Realizing that God created us gives us purpose. We can love ourselves in a healthy way, we can love others properly, and our lives have meaning. You can say with certainty to yourself, that you’re not an accident. You can teach your child that he or she is not an accident. We can have confidence that we have innate worth, not from others, but from God, because He created us.
Question #2: Why do bad things happen?
You need only look at crime and poverty in the world to realize something’s amiss in the force. Just watch the news. We have broken relationships with family, kids, husbands and wives, and even strangers who commit crimes against one another. The world is broken. From broken families to 9/11 and racism, many call this brokenness evil. I call this brokenness sin.
Sin is a departure from God’s ways of love and goodness and order. It’s a rebellion against God. The world is full of sin and everything is affected. Even your good acts can often be selfish. The Apostle Paul said we are all guilty of sin and sin brings death to everything. All seems pretty hopeless until we move to the third question.
Question #3: Can things be fixed?
Yes. Things are broken but they can be fixed. Now, the next question becomes, “Who can fix it?” The world will tell you to seek more. Maybe it’s the quest for more—more money, more adventure, more sex. Keep busy for a lifetime. Become self-reliant. These things can busy lots of folks for a lifetime.
Does the answer lie in ourselves or God? If we think we have ultimate power, we’ll live more like we see in men’s magazines than in Scripture. The magazines tell us to get more—and more is never defined. Just get more…more women, more money, and more power.
I’d argue that this life is a type of religion as well—just one where you’re worshiping yourself instead of something more powerful, more historical, more overcoming of sin, and more fitting of worship. We end up taking a filthy rag and working harder to clean dirty windows. It’s exhausting.
Fixing the problem ultimately takes God—not ourselves. We need Jesus to fix the problem. In Scripture, we read about God loving the world so much He sent his Son. Jesus came to fix the problem. He changes things—including us.
Question #4: What can I do to help fix it?
If we have answered the first three questions, then a natural fourth question is, “What should I do now that I know this?” The simplest way I know to put it is this: create a new culture. You’ll want to create a culture of fixing things, of righting wrongs. From school to government, medicine, education, church, your own family, to your life and goals…all things need to be restored continually.
In a world of alcohol and drug abuse, crime, depression, overwhelming stress, suicide, terrible marriages, cancer, and suffering, you are needed as a husband and dad to help fix the bad things and create more good things. Be a helpful husband and a disciple-making dad in your home. How you answer these four questions will change your life. Get solid on the answers, live them out with purpose, and teach them to your kids.
Are you solid on your answers to these four questions? Are your kids?
Be careful that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit based on human tradition, based on the elements of the world, rather than Christ. —Colossians 2:8