Friday, November 20, 2009

My First Message: Amazing Stories of the Bible

Eugene Peterson's The Message Bible paraphrase has been very helpful in relating the wisdom of the Bible in modern-day language. Amazing Stories of the Bible uses passages from The Message to tell the stories of David and Goliath, Daniel in the Lion's Den, Jonah and the Huge Fish, and Bread and Fish for All. Each story is accompanied by bright, cartoonish pictures, and sections titled "Pray" and "Live." The book also includes a fun audio CD.

The story is written in a very interactive style. Each page asks a question, such as "How much taller was Goliath than you?" or "David didn't want to use armor to protect himself. What did David think would protect him?"

The prayer at the end of the story of David and Goliath says, "Tell God some of the things you are afraid of. Ask God to be with you whenever you are afraid. Ask him to give you courage to be brave and to stand up for what is right."The "Live" section suggests acting out the story, talking about heroes you know, and memorizing Philippians 4:6, which says "Instead of worrying, pray."

The CD is narrated by Manty, the praying mantis, and the stories are read by a young girl and set to background music. They pause to allow listeners to discuss the questions, but they don't read the "Pray" or "Live" sections. The CD ends with a few songs, including "This Little Light of Mine" and "Rise and Shine."

What I Like: My son loved this set, and couldn't wait for his sister to get home and listen with him. He liked knowing the answers to all the questions, and he liked the pictures. We listen to a lot of books on CD, but he listened to this one over and over, even though the stories are very familiar.

I liked having the entire Bible story included, instead of a short summary, like most Bible story books.

I especially liked the "Pray" and "Live" sections. It is so important to link the stories of the Bible to our daily life, so kids will know they aren't just nice stories, but should change the way we live.

What I Dislike: The voice of Manty was a bit annoying, but he only narrates the first few minutes. My son liked looking for his picture on each page and didn't seem annoyed by his voice at all. The background music was a little distracting too, but again, my son and daughter didn't mind.

Overall Rating: Very Good

Age Appeal: 2-8

Publisher Info: Navpress, 2007; ISBN: 1-60006-235-0; Paperback, $12.99

Buy it Now at for $9.99

OR Buy it at for $11.04.

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