If you want your kids to build an authentic faith by reading first-hand accounts of Bible characters, consider the Friends with God Story Bible. Published by Group, this book comes from a company knowledgeable about what works with children. Written by Jeff White and illustrated by David Harrington, this Bible is full of colorful scenes and stories designed to capture your little reader’s attention.
This Bible includes Old and New Testament stories told from a first person perspective! This is what makes this children’s bible stand out. As you read you will notice an emphasis on how the characters explain what is going on as if you are right there with them. The text includes some direct quotes from scripture and plenty of adjectives to develop the imagery of the story. The wording focuses on showing you what is happening more than telling you.
As soon as our copy of this Bible arrived my daughters held it endearingly close to their faces and stared at the pages. My girls raced through the book to find a few of their favorite stories. They needed to see Ruth and Esther, particularly. They started pointing out details and also bartering with me on who would get to keep this Bible and devotion as their own! I'll tell you how we successfully resolved this discussion, but first I want to point out a few other specifics.
We noticed that the Bible characters use language that is relatable! The text is concise, but inclusive of key elements to the story. Because of the way this Bible is designed, it is easy to see God at the very heart of each story. It is also easy to see the relational nature of our faith. Characters encourage the readers to witness their own relationship with God as they pray and put confidence in God for their situation. God hears them and acts. As we are reading, we are absorbing the feelings of the people in the stories. From heartache to excitement, we have a glimpse into the heart of these Bible greats!
At the end of each story, there is an up-close encounter with the main character. In this section, the Bible character gives a few parting thoughts for deeper consideration or personal application. There is also a challenging question or action step. Lastly, the readers are invited to scan the page to interact with the characters through the free app. We downloaded the free app and tried scanning the page to see what happened. The kids were spellbound. This is the first time we had seen this feature in a children's bible.
The app includes colorful collectable cards and mobile games designed to further strengthen the connection between the characters and the readers. The free app is available on iTunes and Google Play. Additionally, within the app, you will receive a devotional prompt with a simple idea for your family.
Children will be eager to study the pictures within the Friends with God Story Bible because they will discover welcoming faces and current illustrations. Different perspectives and bright pops of color repeat throughout the book. The text is easy to read and not overwhelmed by the illustrations. The faces of the animals and people are expressive and clear. My kids particularly were drawn to the feelings evoked from each countenance.
The Friends with God Story Bible has an accompanying devotional book! This devotional has 54 devotions and engaging questions that will foster further thinking about how these characters are not just characters in a story, but real individuals who have had an experience with God.
A few other short details to note about this Bible:
- Under the title of each story, readers can find a reference for where to find the actual account in the Bible.
- The stories are short enough to read aloud and hold interest.
- The dialogue is neatly tucked into the story and seamlessly maintains the sentiments of the main character along with the conversations that are essential to the story.
The Friends with God Story Bible is an engaging resource for families hoping to give their kids a different perspective. From the vibrant illustrations to the first-hand account of specifics, this children’s bible has much to offer. The whole family can benefit from time together diving deeper into these unique viewpoints of the ancient accounts we all hold so dear.
Remember how I said I would tell you how we resolved the issue of who got to keep this Bible? When we aren't reading it as a family, my 10 year old daughter decided that she would read the Bible to her 8 year old sister while she draws in the devotion book. (My son listened in too.) I will leave you with the precious drawing I found in my daughter's devotional book...
We loved this Bible! Having my children connect with Bible stories in this way is what it's all about.
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