The coronavirus pandemic has left us all with questions, some new, some old. When is it safe to go out? Can we go back to church? How can I keep my family safe?
And of course, it has also spurred many deeper questions: Why did my friend get sick? Why did my loved one die? Are these the last days?
Dr. Ingrid Faro and her co-author, Janelle Alberts, don't shy away from hard questions. In fact, they've written an entire book about them specifically for parents of middle-grade students: Honest Answers: Exploring God Questions With Your Tween.
Faro, a seminary professor, author and speaker, tells host Marti Pieper on this episode of the Hope for Your Marriage series on Charisma News, "Our heart in working on this book was just realizing the difficult questions that we're all asked as parents as kids become more and more savvy. ... And especially with the fear, and even the trauma that I see in a lot of people with the COVID epidemic, and people being sheltered at home and families being squished together ... many hadn't had dinners together for years. And so all of a sudden, there are so many more opportunities for interaction, but also so many more questions about 'Where is God in all the things that are happening?'"
Faro sees her book with Albers as an opportunity for parents, youth leaders and "anybody who's interacting with kids" to have a guide for the hard questions kids ask. And she's no stranger to hard questions in her own parenting. Years ago, her husband took his life after suffering what she says was "excruciating pain" for nine years.
"Our son was just 11," Faro says. "I know [my husband] was a believer. I know he's with Jesus. But it was just such a hard thing for both of us, especially our son, who had just seen his dad suffer. And then also, financially, I trusted the wrong person. I was in business at the time and financially, I lost everything. And so everything just crumbled beneath us."
Faro shares how these events led her son to conclude God was angry with them. He "went as far in rebellion against God as he could," even dropping out of school and moving out of their home before he turned 17.
A seminary student at the time, Faro found herself searching for answers and crying out to the Lord. "I remember one time when I just started yelling at God: 'Where are You? You know, You're a terrible Father. You're not helping my son. You're not helping me,'" she said. "And I felt so guilty about it, but I said, 'You know what I'm thinking anyway, so now I said it.'"
What Faro learned through that trial, she says, was to go to God with her toughest questions. To hear about the miracle God brought into her life as He answered her son's questions in a supernatural way, listen to this episode of the Family Matters series on Charisma News here.
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