(This is a little story I wrote a couple of years ago for a wee book I am making for my children. This book is compiled of stories all inspired by my children and our life together.)
Striving to better your child's education is indeed an honorable aim. The longer I have been a parent, the more I am amazed at the capacity of a comparatively young child's ability to learn, retain and apply knowledge. It is truly remarkable.
When I first became a mother, I endeavored at a fairly young age to being teaching our first son his colors, letters, numbers, etc. This went fairly well. I found, with some astonishment, that our second child was a very keen observer, and that even without me formally teaching him, he very quickly learned and mastered the basic skills he watched his brother perform.
Although momentarily floored at his correct observations of "red" blocks or "three" cookies, or identifying "his" cup was marked with an "R", I quickly and most conceitedly reasoned that any child of mine should of course be brilliant.
I continued to witness these phenomena with each successive child. Surely, I imagined, my husband and I simply had good genetics, for of course all of our children were handsomer, happier and more intelligent than any I had ever seen before or since I entered motherhood.
In teaching spiritual truths, I was most impressed. Not only were my children generally well-behaved and attentive, but more often than not they could comprehend enough of a lesson or spiritual conversation to expound upon it to some degree, at their level of understanding, which was of course usually very sweet and delightful to hear from them.
Imagine then, my shock and horror, to hear my Josiah, then age four, explain his enlightened description of the Holy Trinity as made up of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Goalie!
Where do children get such ideas?
At this point, as I attempted to gently correct his error, I began to realize the enormity of the task before me, for teaching such deep spiritual truths to a four year old is far more difficult than you may know.
"No Josiah," I began, "It is not the Holy Goalie, is it the Holy GHOST."
From this I received from my son nothing but a blank stare.
"Ghost, Josiah, NOT Goalie. It's God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy GHOST."
At this continuance he smirked, and I discerned from his mannerism that he rather thought I was playing a joke on him, pulling his leg so-to-speak, and he was not going to fall for it.
"See Jo, ghost actually means spirit. So it's God the Holy SPIRIT."
His facial expression now turned to one of concern for his poor mother, who had most assuredly taken leave of her senses, and who was to be pitied. I began to understand it would have been much easier to have convinced myself that the third member of the Trinity played soccer.
But all was not lost.
The older boys got a very hearty laugh from both their brother's misunderstanding AND their mother's pathetic attempt to rectify it, and I learned it is best to save some of the explanations of deep spiritual truths for when their father is home.