A friend and I were texting the other day about children's books as she is expecting her first grandchild soon. I was excited to send her my recommended pregnancy books and told her when I had time I would send her our favorite children's books too. When I was taking pictures today, I thought I should write a blog about them and share them with all of you too!
I've made it a point to buy Aila and Avie books that are focused on character-building and learning about Jesus and His truths. I've even went as far as to pass along or donate most of our books that didn't really go along with that focus. So many kids books don't seem to have much point other than to tell a random story about princess or an animal on an adventure, for example. If it is extra educational (involving math, learning letters/grammar or facts about science, history, etc), promotes building character (kindness, patience, or emotional intelligence), or if it speaks truth about the Godhead, then it stays. Pretty much anything else gets passed along.
So here are thirteen of our favorite books in our house:
1. It Will Be Okay, by Lysa TerKeurst
The first time I read this book to our girls I lost it--full blown crying and my girls were turning and looking at me like I was...well, their momma (because this happens quite frequently when you fill your house with books about Jesus). It's just really good-- it's about trusting God to take care of us, even when life gets scary.
2. Does God Know How To Tie Shoes, by Nancy White Carlstrom
This books is a little different in that I think of it as very abstract, or maybe imaginative? But I love that it incorporates scripture in conversational form as we do with our kids every day.
Here's a sample:
3. Next up, Just In Case You Ever Wonder, by Max Lucado
This one I cried the first time reading too-- it is heart wrenching in a "I just want my girls to know about God more than anything else in the world and know I love them and am here for them no matter what" kind of way! We love this one.
See what I mean?
4. In My Heart, by Jo Witek
This one is focused on teaching kids about their feelings. It doesn't mention God in it, but I think it's a great tool for increasing emotional intelligence.
5. I Talk To God About How I Feel, by Stormie Omartian
This one takes emotional intelligence to the next level by inviting the Lord into those turbulent emotions. The pages of this book take kids through lonliness, fear, worry, anger and hurt. It teaches how to tell God about those emotions and tells of what God does and says in response.
6. Psalm 23, by Richard Jesse Watson
This one is nothing but Psalm 23. I love that the girls can learn scripture and have a mental image to help with that memorization process.
7. Have You Filled A Bucket Today? by Carol McCloud
This book shines in the concept and is a little lacking on the design and wording. I think it rambles a little and could be shortened by about half, but the idea that everyone carries an invisible bucket and it's up to us whether we fill each other up or tear them down is great. It dives into bullying and how people who "dip" into other people's buckets in an attempt to fill their own end up sad and empty. I would be so happy if Aila and Avie got this concept into their hearts forever and they strive to always be "bucket fillers".
8. The Tale of Three Trees, retold by Angela Elwell Hunt
Oh, this is a sweet story of dreams, patience, sacrifice and perspective. This one may make you tear up too, if you're anything like me.
9. Win Or Lose I Love You, by Lysa TerKeurst
10. Thank You, God, For Everything, by August Gold
This one truly is golden for walking alongside 'Daisy' through her journey of learning all she can be thankful for to God. Young and old will benefit from reading this book of gratitude.
11. If Jesus Lived Inside My Heart, by Jill Roman Lord
This sweet hardback book has been perfect for beginner babies learning about God. It's short, rhymes, and talks all about what it looks like if Jesus has set up residence in our hearts.
12. What Happens When I Talk To God? by Stormie Omartian
This book is all about prayer! It is a little long (as I have found all my children's books are by Stormie Omartian), but it covers so many aspects of prayer--where and when you can pray, if you have to speak out loud, what to say and more. Let's teach our kids to pray when they're young so when they are older their prayers will be natural, confident and unashamed of talking to God in private or in public!
13. His Little Princess, by Sheri Rose Shepherd
Lastly, this book is one of favorties and we've started giving it as a gift along with one of these glittery, stretchy crowns at birthday parties. It is for little girls and speaks of their true value and identity as a daughter of the Most High King. I believe little girls would grow up to be less insecure, less shame-filled and more dependent upon the Lord if they confidently knew of their true identity. It is written for God's real princesses and is not a fiction, fairy tale book--genius.
Just look at this sample:
Well, those are some of our favorites! I didn't include any of our children's Bibles because there are so many out there. If you have any character-building and/or God-filled books you and your little ones love, please share them in the comments!
Happy and healthy reading,