Friday, December 11, 2009

Loosening the Grip

My husband and I recently decided to allow our eight year old son to begin reading the Harry Potter series of books; something he has been asking about for a few weeks now. We researched the series and read what some Christians had to say about the themes and decided to give it a try. We told him last night that he could read the first book and we would be reading it, too. Today he came home from school with the first book in the series. We explained to him the warnings the Bible gives against sorcery and witchcraft and pointed out that this is a fictional series. We even showed him a snippet from an interview with the author in which she clearly states that she does not believe in magic and does not want her young readers to view this series as anything but fiction.

My son's personality was also a factor in our decision. You have to know T- he is bright, serious, intense and often quite challenging. He is also quite the little man of God. He loves the Lord, has more of the Scripture committed to memory than I do and has a deep faith for an eight year old. Still, all day today, I felt a little uneasy about it. And when he jumped in the car and cracked open the book before the minivan door had time to close, I thought, "I hope we made the right decision!"

The thing is we do live in this world. And he is an eight year old boy who wants to be able to participate in the lunch room discussions of this popular book series with his friends. And this is the first of many decisions we will have to help him make about the culture and how to be in it but not of it. I pray we have not made a misstep but I also know that if we have, it won't be irreversible.

This post helped me think through this topic today. I have no idea if she would agree with our decision but her musings and conclusions certainly resonated with mine.


Andrea said...

Natalie--it sounds like you are doing the right thing! you prayed and considered it carefully *for your family* and are helping T navigate the culture under you and big T's care. Having an older child is challenging and takes much mental energy, but it teaches us so much as parents. love you! andrea

Andrea said...

ps. remind me and i'll share what we decided to do about the HP series.


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