A couple of days ago, Mark Batterson posted this on his blog about a book assigned to one of his children at school with what he deemed as inappropriate content. He doesn’t mention the title of the book but does cite his concerns over inappropriate language and sexual concepts that are beyond the ability of his children to process.
Here is a brief quote from the post:
“We live in a culture where kids lose their innocence so young. They are bombarded by sexuality and violence and language at such an early age. And it makes me mad and sad. It’s not fair to our children. They ought to be able to enjoy their edenic innocence as long as possible.”
While I applaud Mark Batterson’s awareness of what his children are being exposed to and taking a proactive approach to what his children are exposed to, there are some parents who, in my opinion, are overprotective. Now, I don’t think Mark is one of those overprotective parents based on what I read from him, but I do think that there needs to be more clarity on what is meant by “edenic innocence.” For some that means sheltering children from all that is “secular” to the point of handicapping them from being a missional follower of Christ.
I’m all for parents being active filters for their children. We need to be continually passing those filters on to our children, though, so they can discern and filter things on their own as they grow and are capable of doing so. The difficulty comes in discerning for ourselves, as parents, when to pass on certain filters to our children, giving them responsibility for their own discernment. It should be a gradual process that is governed by prayer and seeking of wisdom from parents who have “been down that road” already.
- If you are a parent, how do you determine what is and what isn’t appropriate for your children?
- How do you determine when it is time for your children to make discernment calls on their own?
- As children’s ministers, how do you counsel parents?
- Are there resources/authors that you gravitate to when partnering with parents?