Monday, October 8, 2012

Theories that Challenge Faith

Question: How did you answer your kids’ questions about things that seem to challenge faith, such as evolution?

Answers:

Kenneth and Catherine
My best advice in response to such questions is - "you don't have to decide how that relates to your faith or religious beliefs, you only need to understand how a rational person could come to that conclusion and recognize that it probably doesn't have anything to do with your beliefs and the truths on which your beliefs are based."  This applies to scientific theories or philosophical or political arguments, etc.

Rachel (and Bennett)
The one question we discussed often was how to receive answers to your prayers.  In order to answer those challenges I read articles and books and discussed my findings with my child.  That particular question is so individual that it is hard to answer well, but I do tell my children that answers are available.  We have to desire to know the answer and study what has been said about the subject, and lastly, we often have to live a principle before we gain a testimony of its truthfulness.  I would stress that it is important to find answers to your questions--to gain a testimony for yourself.

Cynthia (and Brad)
Try to teach faith that someday Heavenly Father will explain everything. Until then, we used the object lesson like this: take a straight pin. Ask the question: "How many angels can dance on the head of this pin?" Of course there is no answer according to the knowledge we have now. And does it really matter whether we know the answer? How would it affect our lives if we did know the answer?The same with many questions about how this all began, and who did what, and what did they know, and how did they react, etc. etc. The basic principles of the gospel are so simple, and yet living them, apparently, so difficult for many people, that we have all we can do to do that. Save the complications for later, when they can all be explained, and probably very easily, with the enhanced knowledge that we will someday have. I am sure explaining how man could someday fly would have been a mystery to Aristotle.

Marsha (and Richard)
I don’t really remember this challenge as our children were growing up. I do remember one daughter listening to the story of the resurrection and atonement one Easter and then saying, “I’m not sure I believe that”.  She was not more than 8 and I realized that she no longer took my word for it.  She would have to discover the truth for herself.

Karen and Lance
We never had any discussions on this, so we can't tell you. Maybe they discussed them with their peers, don't know. We do have some free thinkers but they all seem to be in the realm of following the teachings of Jesus Christ. Guess life was a little less complicated then. Many of our discussions were more on what we should be doing instead of trying to keep them from going a different way.

Next week's question: What was your dating kids' curfew and what happened if they broke it? Also, did you wait up for them when they were out or how did you know when they came home?

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