Ask Away!

“My mother made me a scientist without ever intending to. Every other Jewish mother in Brooklyn would ask her child after school: “So did you learn anything today?” But not my mother, “Izzy,” she would say, “did you ask a good question today?” That difference – asking good questions – made me become a scientist.”

Isidor Rabi

Ask_AwayI’m a firm believer in never letting go of our love of learning. Even as adults, we ought to continue increasing in wisdom. But while some might think learning is merely a matter of intaking knowledge, learning is also the asking of great questions.

One of the many reasons I love our pastors at church is their openness. They are willing to admit they don’t know everything and are constantly encouraging us to test everything we hear against Scripture. Why is this important? We aren’t to simply intake information, accepting it for truth; we are to search truth out and verify what aligns with God’s Word, not man’s.

Shouldn’t all learning be this way? When learning anything new, we ought to break it down to the innermost parts. We ought to weigh the arguments being made, turning them inside and out. Everything we hear, read, and see should be carefully considered and thought over; weighed against God’s Word.

Some parents are afraid of their kids’ questions, especially those about their faith. However, there is no need for fear. It is okay to ask questions. It is good to ask questions! There is no question too big for God; He knows them all and their answers.

Let me be clear, I do not believe in teaching our children to be skeptics; they need to trust our word and what we share with them. But we also want them to be inquisitive and examine the world around them. It’s also important to note: not all questions are because you doubt what is being learned, but because you are attempting to build an argument for why something is true.

In our home, our children understand they are welcome to ask us anything. They are able to question our beliefs and ask why we believe what we believe. By asking these questions of us, in the comfort of a loving family, they are able to have their questions answered fully and truthfully. We are laying a foundation for all the learning to come and the questions they will receive from the world around them.

If we don’t ask questions of our children and encourage them to ask in return, how are we preparing them for the world outside our front doors? We need to learn not only to be open to questions, but welcoming. Wisdom and knowledge have been gained through many a good question. Why not start asking more today?

“Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.” Acts 17:11

🔔Time to Chime In: How do you help your children determine the difference between asking a good question and just questioning authority?

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7 thoughts on “Ask Away!

  1. Love this! I have one son who asks “scientific” questions, although he usually already knows the answer. I have another son just underneath that one who could question a person to death with his “How old is Robert Downey Jr.?” and “How come in the cartoon…” Yes, questions are good to ask. The only one I really don’t like is the “why?” after being told to do something.

    Liked by 1 person

    • “Why”, is a tough one; isn’t it? My only rule with asking ‘why’, is that my children have to obey while asking or obey first. Once I see they are really just being curious, and not rebellious, then I will gladly answer why they are doing the task at hand. After all, I like knowing why I do something. I can’t imagine my kids are any different.

      I just need them to know an explanation can’t always be given in the exact moment, immediacy might be important and even save lives. So do what I ask first, then ask why; it might help you live longer. (laughing)

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s a very good approach to “why!” I’ll have to start doing that. I imagine it will save frustration on both sides, as well 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. it’s a shame that parents are inclined to repel why questions from an early age because it implies a rejection of authority. Maybe there should be a separate question word for this and the ‘why?’ Questions which are genuinely about finding something out and not challenging authority

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think we consider them rebellious questions because our kids are asking why they have to be obedient. “Why do I have to do what you tell me to?” “Why should I listen to you?” (Those kinds of things.)

      A challenge in authority should be nipped in the bud. However, a good question should always be encouraged and welcomed.

      When in doubt, listen intently to the entire question (it can be a challenge for parents, at times, not to assume we know what our kids are asking), then form a response, and, furthermore, encourage more good questions.


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