My daughter picked a DVD off the shelf. It had a 12 rating.
“Darling,” I said, “I know you’re nearly 12, but I don’t want you seeing things that aren’t suitable. Just because it says ’12’ doesn’t mean it’s good for you to watch it.”
“Mum,” Fluff replied with a sigh, “if you’re worried about bad language, don’t be. I hear it all the time on the bus.”
“On the school bus?” I asked, at the same time wondering why I was so surprised. It’s not as if I haven’t heard the way some people speak – effing and blinding in front of their toddlers. In our previous house we could hear the language through the wall as the neighbours hurled insults at one another at full volume, often in front of their four children. Nice
‘Looking at it one way, you could say, “Anything goes. Because of God’s immense generosity and grace, we don’t have to dissect and scrutinize every action to see if it will pass muster.” But the point is not to just get by. We want to live well, but our foremost efforts should be to help others live well.’
1 Corinthians 10:23,24, The Message
“Yes, Mum.” She shrugged. “The ‘eff-word’ and… everything.” She waved her hand to indicate ‘everything’.
Now it was my turn to sigh. “You know Mummy and Daddy don’t use that language, don’t you?”
“Grandma and Grandad and Nanna don’t use that language either, do they?”
“And you don’t use it?”
“No, Mum!” Fluff said, slightly exasperated in that on-the-verge-of-puberty-but-not-quite-a-teenager way.
“Well, you’re growing up. You’re finding out that the world is not a good place. But you don’t have to be the same. You can choose to be different. Following Jesus means choosing not to be the same.”
“I know, Mum.” Pause. Smile. “Thank you, Mum.”