Cold Case Christianity & God’s Crime Scene For Kids – Review.

Recently, my oldest daughter and I sat down to read through both of J. Warner Wallace’s texts noted in the above title (She just turned eight).

We actually read both of them over a few weeks.

However, as opposed to a traditional review, we decided that perhaps a Q&A could be a bit more interesting. With that said here we go…

Dad: What do you think was the most important idea in CCCFK?

Lily: Jason really thought that maybe Jesus was not real, but then after they [the cadets and detective Jeffries] talked about it he knew Jesus must have been real.

Dad: How did they know that? How did they find out? What did they do?

Lily: They talked about good evidence.

Dad: Like what?

Lily: Well, there were some people that did not even believe in, or like Jesus, but then said they saw Him.

Dad: Like who? Who didn’t really like Jesus, but then said they saw Him alive?

Lily: One person is Paul, and another one is James.

Dad: So why, or how, is that important for showing that Jesus was real, or that He was alive again?

Lily: Because, Jesus’ disciples said He was alive, and why would the bad people [Paul and James] say He was alive too?

Dad: But why is that important that Paul and James said the same thing that the disciples said? Couldn’t Paul and James just lie?

Lily: Because if it was a lie, then people would beat them up and kill them, but why would they just get beat up and killed if they just lied about it? Who’d die for a lie?

Dad: Ok. Iet’s move on to GCSFK

Dad: What do you think is the most important idea in GCSFK?

Lily: Grandma Miri started to believe in God when they {cadets} were doing their mystery.

Dad: What about the book? What was it about?

Lily: It’s about a shoebox mystery, and about reasons to think that God is real.

Dad: Like what reasons?

Lily: Like the universe could not just pop into existence, so God would have to make it.

Dad: Was that your favorite reason? Or was there another reason that was your favorite?

Lily: Yes, that’s my favorite.

Dad: Ok, why was that your favorite?

Lily: I am not sure.

Dad: Is it because that you think it makes more sense that if something begins, then something, or someone had to make it begin?

Lily: Well, it makes more sense than any other reason. Or maybe because that is the only one I can really think about.

Dad: Ok.

Dad: Did you enjoy the mysteries that went along with each of the stories?

Lily: I liked the kid mysteries because I’m a kid, and that was interesting to me.

Dad: So you thought the mysteries about the skateboard and the shoebox were “fun enough” to read about? You wanted to know what happened?

Lily: Yes.

Seeds. A “Stone in the Shoe”…

This was a tough evaluation. As can be seen above, she was a tough nut to crack – but that does not mean that the wheels where not spinning.  Lily asks very deep, penetrating questions regarding the nature of God, the Trinity, the plausibility of the life of Jesus, and other parental curve balls. Therefore, it was my supposition that she was prime for Wallace’s fine introductory, but substantial, book(s) regarding the rock-bottom fundamentals of the Christian faith. But even as her father, it can be quite difficult for even me to read her at times, even while reading the book(s).

There were occasions when I could tell that she would be listening, or reading along, very intently. Yet, there were times, and topics, when she would seem to simply “check out” (I do not want to name those particular topics as it may slant your perspective of them. The truth is simply that it is more a reflection of what she was/is dealing with, as opposed to the presentation of the topic – this may be the same regarding your own child i.e. one topic may pose great interest while another may seem “irrelevant” at the moment, though not forever). However, I am not worried in that I am confident that there were many seeds that were planted, some nice little stones in the shoe – some very good ideas that seem to have wedged themselves within her mind. Ideas that she will ponder over at times – Why would “the bad guys” just lie and get “beat up” for stuff they knew wasn’t “real”… Why doesn’t stuff just “pop up” if no one made it? – “If an alien did come…?(the “alien” will make sense if you decide to read the book). Those types of ideas come up every now and again. And, if so, we discuss them.

Naturally, I am hoping that more of the material will come to her mind as these issues present themselves later on in her journey. Again, the seeds are there, the stones are doing their proper work of mental aggravation, and I trust them to continue `(and it is only a positive that the material, the big ideas, are interwoven throughout a fictional story specifically designed to relate with, or parallel, each of the main arguments). Lily recalls the fictional elements well, and, as time will tell, I do not doubt that this will help her to recall the arguments that coincide with them. Moreover, these are common discussions that we have within the home, and Wallace’s contributions, I believe, in their own way, help to solidify a much larger, and longer, conversation.

Wallace’s texts may be exactly the sort of material that your child is ready to go through with you. Be ready to know the material yourself – you know your child. And yet there may be things that surprise you – she may not care for one topic, but may care for another. She may ask such questions only in the context of a discussion – but she may never ask such questions of you – yet be intrigued with the book in her own quiet way. Be flexible. Let the ideas (and God) do their own work, over time, if need be…

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