- Posted December 25, 2013 by
Alany, New York
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Tell us the Good Stuff!
12 year old's determination to read the Bible
But nothing prepared me for the day 2 months ago when my oldest came up to me and told me he was going to read the Bible from beginning to end. I really didn't understand his quest given his age and our serious lack of going to church. As traveling nurses, we have traveled all over the country for the last 7 years. Sometimes we stay in one place for 3 months, other times longer. But given the frequent traveling, finding a church was always difficult. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of churches out there, but finding one that doesn't offer a la carte Christianity is getting harder and harder.
Our children are home schooled and use a curriculum with Bible teachings included. We also say prayers at home. But overall we are pretty simple and do our best not to force religion on them. We teach them what we believe and why, but allow them to ask any questions and to come up with their own conclusions. They are still at young enough ages where we keep things light. That was until our son asked me about salvation a few months back and asked what it meant to be saved. I tried explaining it to him in many different ways. For whatever reason he seemed to not grasp the concept of how cruel Jesus' death was and how His death saves us. So I made the decision to let him watch "The Passion of the Christ" with me watching it along with him.
I saw a complete change in my son that day. He was full of questions, and at the same time he also cried. He got what it meant to accept Jesus. I wasn't prepared for that given his young age. I was brought up attending Catholic schools and never understood who Jesus really was or what He did until I was in my 30's!
About a month after watching the movie, my son came to me and told me he wanted to know more about God and Jesus and was now going to read the Bible from beginning to end. At first I thought, "OK, he'll get as far as Deuteronomy and give up". That was a month ago. He continues to read every evening before bed. His goal is to read one to two chapters per day. He will often come to me with questions I cannot answer, so we do our best to look up the answer.
I know we need to find a good church someday - and we will once we have settled down. We are moving to our land we bought soon enough - once the house being built is completed. But for now we just take each question as it comes.
I discussed this with one of my brothers recently. He told me to be careful because when he read the Bible at around the same age as my son is, he said he became confused. He said there were too many hypocritical statements and stories in the Bible, and it caused him to turn away from God and Christianity. I appreciated his concern, and told him that while we would guide our son the best we could, ultimately it would be up to our son to make his own decision about what he believed.
The bottom line is my son has inspired me to actually want to be a better person and to learn more. The ironic thing is when I was a kid I disliked school for the simple fact that I had to learn what the teachers wanted me to learn instead of focusing on the things that interested me. I would get A's in areas that I loved, and barely passed the areas that I found boring. This would upset my teachers because my grades fluctuated so much, sometimes on a weekly basis. Now my son will complain how he dislikes doing his school work every day, yet pulls out his King James Bible every night on his own and attempts to truly comprehend what he is reading. His determination and perseverance are something I truly admire. He has inspired me to pick up my own Bible more often - something I have slacked on this past year.
It is not just his Bible reading that is inspiring - it is his change of character. Before he often picked on his sisters, seemed angry a lot, and did a lot of huffing and puffing when asked to do anything. Typical 12 year old boy behavior for most. But the last 2 months he has become pleasant, helpful, and a lot more fun to be around. Not that he was a bad kid before by any means, but there is a big difference that is noticed by all of us.
- My life