Letters to God
By Rusty Surette, NEWS 9
Contemplating God and religion can be difficult for many adults, let alone children.
Eleven Christian girls and eight Christian boys, of all different ages, were brought together for a day and asked to write letters to God. The children seemed to have no qualms or questions, they just went straight to work.
"Thank you for giving me my motorcycle," Grant, age 7, wrote.
Many of the children were appreciative, giving thanks and praise for toys, families and friends.
"Thank you for my friends today," said five-year-old Hannah.
But many of the children had questions. Some had questions about what it was like to die on the cross, while others were more concerned about the afterlife.
"Will I see Vinny and Kirby in heaven?" asked eight-year-old Gabe.
Vinny and Kirby are Gabe's dogs. His dogs were not dead at the time Gabe was interviewed. After Gabe's interview, however, Vinny was hit by a truck, Gabe's mother said. Gabe's mother said she believes God was somehow preparing Gabe for sudden loss.
Eight-year-old Jaycie also shares the same concern for 'Gigi,' her grandmother who lost a battle with cancer four years ago.
"I can't wait for heaven. Is my Gigi doing good? I think of her everyday," wrote Jaycie.
It's common for these kinds of questions and thoughts to make their way to parents or guardians, Pastor Darron Johnson said. According to Pastor Johnson honesty is the best policy when it comes to children, even when discussing death.
"I have discovered the best policy is still honesty and to be able to just say, 'this person is no longer with us. That they've gone to be with the Lord," Johnson, youth director at Oklahoma City's Prospect Baptist Church, said.
"Tell my sister Emily I love her very very....much," Claire, 9, wrote.
Claire's sister Emily died of heart complications, she said. She said her family turned to God to help them cope with the loss, but she, like many others her age, still want answers.
"Why did she die?" she asked.
Pastor Johnson said it is important for parents to sit down and talk to their children about God even if they don't have all the answers to their children's questions.
"Life is difficult and one of the things I think is true for our generation of young people is they are forced to deal with more complexities than another generation prior to them," he said.