5 Board Books About Being Loved by God 

This afternoon I posted my first Live Facebook Video. Check it out! Like me on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/amy.negussie/videos/10155758673448809/

In case you’re more of a reader than a watcher, I thought I’d post the list here for you as well with Amazon links.

While Amazon is by far the most convient way to find these books, I also wanted to let you know that I have found some of these books at Marshalls, the Dollar Store, and my new discovery (Amazon) Prime Used. Also don’t forget about your public library!

Below are my top five (Christian) books for babies…though my very favorite is not explicitly Christian. My criteria for judging the top five are 1) Diversity is represented 2)Simplicity 3) Basic Message of God’s Love.

Diversity is important to me not only as a person who has lived abroad, studied the horrors of seeing white men as the neutral perspective, but also as a mom of multiracial children. “We need more diverse books!”

Simplicity is important because if you’ve ever tried to read to a child under three, you know less is more. The fewer the words, the more likely your child will focus on the book. Some of these books are on the longer end for board books, so I often read just one phrase per page.

Finally, while silly books are great for bonding with babies and even for passing on a love of reading I was looking for books that instill the basic truth that each child is wonderfully made and loved. Babies aren’t going to get a complicated teaching, but “I am loved” is the gospel even the youngest child can receive.

Jesus Calling for Little Ones Beautiful pictures with diverse children and animals, wordy but can be shorted easily. Written by Sarah Young. Check out her original book for adults

God Made You Nose to Toes  Lesslie Perrot is better known for her co-authored books on marriage with her husband, but this is a great foundational book about how we were specially made. God loves us and made us just the way we are.

Found Psalm 23 retold by Sally Lloyd Wright and illustrated by Jago. Beautiful. Simple. Words of comfort and love.

God is Good All the Time This title puts me in a packed out Black Church in Georgia, with the familiar call and response God is Good, All the Time. It goes through the good things of a child’s life and names the goodness is found in God.

Global Babies This is a secular book, but is by the global children’s fund and all proceeds go to the fund. And, really this book lays out the baby gospel in a simple and clear one sentence about how babies everywhere are loved.

Bonus: Bishop Desmond Tutu’s God’s Dream. This is one of my favorites, but because it was originally a picture book rather than a board book, its a little too wordy for most kids under 2.

 

Review of Miracle Man: The Story of Jesus

Sometime last year I won a copy of John Hendrix’s Miracle Man from my friend Adam’s Illustrated Children’s ministry, which by the way you should check out and order some coloring posters/curriculum cause its great. Anyway, I love John Hendrix’s illustrations and his focus on Jesus as the Miracle Man. It makes the child and grown-up narrator fall in love with Jesus in a whole new way.

It was Lincoln’s obession for a while. My only criticism is theological. The last line of the book is “but the Miracle Man had one last miracle…” and the picture is of the resurrection. After such a compelling story, that line was so disappointing to me. What about Act 2? Also known as the Acts of the Apostles. The Miracle Man was not done with miracles but only getting started. As followers of Jesus today, we can still call on the Miracle Man to heal! What a disappointment to have to re-write that last page myself.

Still, mad props to John Hendrix for his creativity.

My “Big Magic” Story

“Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear.” What a great book! At least I thought so, and so did thousands of other people. I understand it’s not for everyone, but I felt so inspired I wanted to share some of the best things I got out of this book. This is both for your enjoyment and to consolidate my thoughts before book group tonight.

So, book group ladies–spoiler alert!

This book came to me at the perfect time. After many years of neglecting much of my creative bent–I have started calling myself an artist again. I largely didn’t pursue art of any type as a vocation because as Gilbert talks about creative living is not a good career choice.

Unfortunately, I didn’t pursue anything more practical in terms of making money and I neglected song writing, guitar playing, singing, drawing, painting, creative writing, and other things. I did channel my creativity into cooking, preaching, or creating a class.

The story that Gilbert tells about Clive James a written, poet, and critic who recovered from depression falling a huge failure by returning to creativity through painting starts on his daughters bicycle resonated deeply with me.

It wasn’t until I failed big time two years ago–at something that I thought was my life calling that I returned to art. Please don’t try to say I didn’t fail. I tried to start something–it didn’t happen. That’s all I mean.

I thought church was my calling–but during the time where I could barely drag myself to church something got me to write a story and to start drawing.

Gilbert would say it was my “genius,” I say it was the Holy Spirit working with my spirit.  Drawing those pictures, writing and rewriting the story with no expectation except holding it in my hands someday– brought me healing.

Clive James went back to writing, and I may go back to church planting. But for now, without fear I am going to enjoy creating books.

Well, I planned on writing a lot more about the book but I am being summoned by my two-year-old.

Did you read “Big Magic?” What did you get out of it? Other than the part discussed above, my favorite part was about being a trickster vs. a martyr. What did you think about that? I’d love to explore that theme theologically.