Thursday, November 13, 2014

Jesus Calling Bible Storybook {A Review}

I received a free copy of Jesus Calling Bible Storybook from Family Christian in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way for writing the review. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this information in accordance with the FTC Regulations.

Our Homeschool Bible Studies
In our homeschool, we spend our time in the Word of God. We memorize scriptures and we read directly out of the Bible and discuss his goodness and mercy. Starting in preschool (and even before it seems since Baby Wheel chooses to sit with us, too), we come together and sing praises, read, and worship together every morning. We've found even the youngest enjoy hearing the word of God directly from the Bible. 

Family Christian recently sent us Jesus Calling Bible Storybook ($16.99) designed for ages 4 and up to review.

About the Book
Jesus Calling Bible Storybook is a hardcover 256 page illustrated retelling of 95 different Bible stories. Included are stories about creation, the garden, Cain and Abel, Noah, Abram, Jacob,
Joseph, Moses, Joshua, Gideon, Samson, Ruth and Naomi, David, Solomon, Elijah, Jonah, Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, Esther, Nehemiah, Jesus' birth and life, Zacchaeus, the crucifixion, the resurrection, Paul, John, and others. A ribbon bookmark is attached to hold your place.

The retellings have a title with a summary of the story and where the book and chapter the story has come from. If the story is from more than one book, the others are listed as well.

The Jesus Calling series was born from the author's, Sarah Young, journaling time. Jesus Calling is the dialog that she felt was occurring between her and God. She says, "I knew these writings were not inspired as Scripture is, but they helped me grow much closer to God...listening to Jesus increased my intimacy with Him more than any other spiritual discipline...The Bible is, of course, the only Word of God, and I always endeavor to write in accordance with that unchanging standards." (from the Dear Parents and Grandparents opening from Jesus Calling Bible Storybook

After most retellings of the Bible stories, Young provides a scripture reference and then provides what she believed was the voice of God (from her journaling, adapted for children) and creates a dialog "from God."

Each devotion is highlighted in a separate section from the retelling. An example from page 51:

Genesis 28:15
I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go.

And from the author, "I am always watching over you. You don't ever have to be afraid, because I will always be with you, just as I was with Jacob. Whenever you get scared, remember that I am right beside you-taking care of you." ~Sarah Young

 Scripture References
Scripture references are taken from a variety of versions:  New International Version, New Century Version, New King James Version, New American Standard Bible, Contemporary English Version,  New Living Translation, English Standard Version, International Children's Bible, Good News Translation, The New Testament in Modern English, and New Life Version.
The pictures in the story use vivid colors and every page is illustrated.

How We Use It
Nothing replaces reading scripture directly from the Bible. Even children as young as Li can understand the message as we read from it together. When we received Jesus Calling Bible Storybook, we chose to read the stories just like we would a picture book. The boys like to listen to Ceesa read the retellings and look at the pictures.

ALL Jesus Calling books are going to be 50% off starting on November 14th .  You can get your very own copy of Jesus Calling Bible Storybook here.

On November 14th, 2014 their will be a Twitter party at 1-2 pm EST. It will use the hashtag #JesusCalling . Prizes included: 5 participants will win the 10th anniversary edition of Jesus Calling and a $50 Appreciation Certificate and 5 participants will each win $50 Appreciation certificates for a total of 10 prizes during the party!

Additional Note
As with all retellings and devotions, you will need to read through the storybook to determine the appropriateness for your family.

Wishing you homeschool blessings,

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