Thank God for dads who can explain Heaven and toilets

Theology in the Trenches
Sunday, June 24, 2018

Theology in the Trenches

And so it went one early morn, Onion passed. Before the rise of dawn, before little feet came softly down the steps for the day…one of the two goldfish recently purchased gave up the ghost, so to speak. Floating atop the tank come morning it was.

That’s how the day began.

Hindsight is always 20/20 as noted the day before were a large number of tiny bubbles upon the water’s surface. At the time, I had looked closely and could see that the two in the bowl appeared to be swimming easily enough, thus, casting doubt aside, I continued on my way for the day. My instincts told me something was up…or going down…as Onion did have an unusual swag in his wag of the tail fin. But, I was a busy grandma trying my best to keep hope alive that all was well.

I had departed and dad was on duty when it all seemed to come out of nowhere. The owner of Onion was fast asleep and too young for a daddy’s heart to deal with what was taking place… so…letting her sleep was his gift.

However, arising early was big sister who scampered down upon the scene. Noting the sleeping position of Onion topside of the bowl brought her face to face with a new reality. Death was in view and there was nothing a daddy could do but to help his little girl come to terms with what was before her.

Like any logical daddy would do, after allowing her little mind to process that which she witnessed, he scooped the dead fish up in a cup, led the four year old by the hand and deposited fishy into the toilet. As he let her handle the handle as fishy was flushed…down fishy did go.

Two questions promptly bubbled up and out making her thoughts audible.

#1. “Daddy, is fishy in heaven?”

“Yes, fishy is in heaven.”

#2. “Daddy, is heaven in the toilet?”

And I, for one, thank God for daddies who take time to explain to the best of their ability that soul’s go up while bodies stay down.

And, I thank God for having a Father who gave us Psalm 23 for such a time as this.

“…He leads me beside still waters, He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness, for His namesake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For You are with me…” And, He is. Amen

Kathleen Kjolhaug lives outside of Clear

Brook, Minn., with her husband Pete and

their six children. She can be reached by

email at