FatherSon Ventures

Building a Relationship through Adventure

An Existential Question

Written By: Scot Butwell - Aug• 11•15

w parkD and I were hiking at a local preserve when he stunned me with a existential question, “Dad, when I am an adult, will you be in heaven?”

Now, when I was a kid, I don’t think I asked questions like these. Maybe, if I was lucky, I asked one or two in all eighteen years of my childhood.

I was a simple kid. I just assumed my parents would be around when I became an adult. Heaven was like one of the planets in the solar system.

I thought about his question the next couple of days and reflected on how there were several ways that I could have responded to his question.

I believe God knows the beginning and end of every person’s life, and He has an appointed time for the lifespan of every person. Psalm 139 says:

All the days ordained for me

Were written in your book

Before one of them came to be.

When I told the Wife about D’s question, she thought I should have gone with this route, that God knows when a person will go to Heaven.

But I think D was looking for something other than a theological response. That wasn’t the reason he was asking the question, after all.

So I answered, “yes, I will be here when you’re an adult” because I could sense he wanted assurance that I would be a part of his adult life.

I want my son to feel secure about the future and as a seven-year-old, I didn’t want his mind fretting or worrying about his future life as an adult.

He has been listening to the “Lava” song every day on You Tube. It’s a “short” about a volcano before the start of Pixar’s latest film “Inside Out.”

The song is about a male volcano longing for a female volcano to love, and I think the song may have inspired his question about my mortality.

The chorus, with the exception of the last line and minus the male-female love story, captured the essence of D’s question about my lifespan.

I have a dream

I hope it will come true

You are here with me.

 And I am here with you.

 I wish that earth, sea, and sky

up above

Will send me someone to lava.

And even more so the bridge:

I have a dream I hope it would

come true

That you will grow old with me

and I with you.

Another thing I did not do as a kid: listen to a song over and over in five or six different languages, thanks of course to Youtube, to memorize the lyrics.

D has so far learned the “Lava” song in Russian, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese while I would have difficulty memorizing it in English.

There must be a vocational ability in his penchant for learning songs in different languages like being a foreign intelligence spy or a pop music star in China.

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