UPDATE: It was brought to my attention that Abraham did laugh in Genisis 17:17. The remainder of the post has not been changed from its original content.
If you didn’t already know Charis is a feisty child and tonight she focused her feistiness on nothing less then Phil Vischer’s new “Laugh and Learn Bible for Kids“.
Everything started out pretty normal. Stef was finishing up bathing Isaiah while I was starting to read a Bible story to the girls before they went to bed. Ava was cuddled up while Charis was rolling around and climbing up and down Ava’s ladder. About 2 minutes into reading I pause to help Charis off the ladder because it wasn’t attached correctly and she was about to fall.
Times like this make me wonder if she is even listening…but I kept reading just so I could move them to bed. A minute later Charis is back on the ladder this time hanging upside down from the top rung and screams out “No he didn’t! It was Sarah who laughed!” I almost ignored her but Ava chimed in too, “Dad, she is right. It wasn’t Abram who laughed'”.
I had not even noticed! I was just reading to get done and completely missed this, but not Charis. She was really upset that this children’s Bible would take such liberties with the story.
I paused, and we talked and I agreed that that detail was wrong in the children’s Bible and I went back to reading. Now, Charis is ready for a fight and was looking for other errors. “She wasn’t 90, she was 99.” “God didn’t tell Abraham to kill Isaac, Satan did.” Those two she had wrong…but she was engaged.
She is listening, absorbing, and critically thinking! 🙌🎉🍾🥂
I don’t care that she got some of her later “corrections” wrong. She wasn’t just taking what she heard in the children’s Bible as fact, she compared it to the other information she had learned and recognized that something wasn’t right! That’s awesome!
We didn’t end up here by accident. There are two big things I believe have helped my kids know scripture well enough to do this. Before you say it let me just say it’s not just because they are pastor’s kids. PK’s don’t have special spiritual powers that let them be born with a greater knowledge of Scripture than most people.
1. The quality of children’s ministry at our church:
First, we have some amazing staff and children’s ministry team members. Every week they work hard to bring Jesus to kids on their level. Kids aren’t just being babysat while big people do church. They worship, learn, and engage in conversations with their friends about the word of God.
I am so thankful for everyone who has invested in my children through this ministry.
2. Bible reading is part of our family rhythm:
When Ava was about 18 months old we got our hands on a children’s Bible and started reading it with her every night. Once we couldn’t take that one anymore, because we had read it cover to cover so many time, we got a different Bible. We are now onto our 4th children’s Bible. One story a night (most nights) has really helped our children have a firm understanding of the big picture of scripture.
If you don’t have a children’s Bible here’s the 4 we have and quick comments on each.
This was our first children’s bible we read with Ava. I LOVE THE ILLUSTRATIONS! Looking back I wouldn’t recommend this bible for an 18-month-old because the pages have too much text to hold their attention, but it’s great for 3+. Of all the children’s bibles we have read this is my favorite.
This had much shorter stories and is a great first children’s bible. Just keep in mind that some people feel uncomfortable with the idea of a modern-day person taking scripture and paraphrasing it as if Jesus was talking. I never saw anything that made me uncomfortable and would recommend this.
Standford Bible Story Book (appears to be out of print)
I should confess that we actually owned this bible before any of the others, but it wasn’t until recently we actually read through it. It’s written at a more advanced level and children 4 and under will probably have trouble listening to it the entire time. On the other hand, this was the most thorough children’s Bible we have and included many stories you don’t normally see.
This was just released last week by JellyTelly. Up until tonight, it would have had a raving review from me. I’m not completely comfortable with the creative liberties that were taking making it so Abraham laughed rather than Sarah. We aren’t quitting on it yet, but my critical listening skills will be increated.
Each story takes about 5 minutes to read and ends it family discussion questions, which I have been enjoying.
Again I’m not giving this a review either way because we are still too early to decide.
Are you someone who wants to raise children who know and love God’s word? I would encourage you to pick up an age-appropriate children’s Bible and make reading time a priority. Also if you live near Morgantown PA and don’t have a church consider checking out Morgantown Community Church!
What’s your favorite Children’s Bible? Comment below.
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