Son: Mom, I know what the most important thing in the world is.
Me: Yeah? What is it?
He didn’t say “duh,” but it was implied. At this point, I’m feeling pretty good about my Catholic parenting skills.
Son: Do you know what the least important thing in the world is?
Son: I don’t know, I thought maybe you could tell me.
My, how quickly those good feelings are replaced with much more familiar feeling that I am blindly groping through this whole raising children thing.
Me: Ummm…well…what do you think it is?
Let’s be honest: This is a classic parenting technique that should be known as “I have no idea, but am hoping you will talk some more so I can have time to think up a good answer.”
Son: Maybe money? But…even if money shouldn’t be the most important, it still is kind of important because we need it to buy food and gas and our house and stuff.
At this point, still floundering for an answer, I’m just grateful he didn’t include video games or Legos on the list of things we need money for.
Son (continuing): For a while I thought maybe the Devil was the least important…
Wait?! He’s been thinking about this “for a while?”
Son: …but even if he’s bad, he’s still important. I mean, he shouldn’t be important – we should just be able to ignore him all the time. But, we can’t, and we have to watch out for him – so I guess that means he’s kind of important too.
At this point in the conversation, I’ve ceased trying to come up with a good answer and am just soaking up the kid’s theological wisdom (and wondering why I paid so much for a Master’s degree in Theology when I’m getting totally owned by my 8 year old in a theological debate I wasn’t prepared for). I really don’t want him to stop, so I make an intelligent response intended to encourage him to continue and affirm the thinking he’s done so far. Read More