Monday, March 7, 2011

Gotta Have God for Ages 6-9

The "Gotta Have God" series provides "Cool Devotions for Boys." This one targets boys ages 6-9. Containing a total of 106 two-page devotions, this book is divided into three sections. It also includes an introduction at the beginning and an answer key at the back.
  1. Gotta Know God: The first section covers God's character, His names, His creation and His rules, among other basic foundations to theology.
  2. Gotta Know About Me: The second section offers lessons about God's plans for His people and His relationship with those who believe in Him.
  3. Gotta Know God's Men: The third section shares stories of Biblical heroes from both the Old and New Testaments. Readers will learn about well-known men like Abraham, Moses and Jesus, but also lesser-known characters like Reuben, Stephen and Timothy.
There are five parts to each devotion: a verse, a story or lesson, "Your Turn" (application questions and space for journaling), a short prayer and an activity.

What I Like:
This is an attractive book! It's colorful and bright. The spiral binding makes it quite functional. I love the idea of age-appropriate devotions that will instill a healthy habit of regular personal time with God and His Word. Some of the activities are really cool! One has boys write their own psalm to God; another has them take fingerprints of family members then examine the differences with a magnifying glass. While this book clearly targets boys, my daughter likes it, too!

What I Dislike: The writing seems choppy and disjointed in many places. The shorter sentences may appeal to the younger age set, but the inconsistent flow will likely annoy the older boys who should be reading quite well.

Some of the lessons are confusing and/or border on legalistic teaching. For example, one points out that God's Word is truth (which is good), but infers that it is the only book containing truth. The activity then instructs the reader to identify books he should not read, like fairytales, magic and horror. Questionable literature was not discussed anywhere in the lesson, nor is there an explanation of why those topics are considered bad.

Other lessons, while attempting to teach a good lesson, are misleading. For example, several lessons insist that Sunday is the Sabbath, which is historically and biblically inaccurate. Another states: "God wants me to love only Him." The devotional teaches that we should love God above all else, but claiming we should "only" love Him is in direct conflict with the many, many Scriptural passages that teach us to love others.

Finally, I wish the activities contained more variety. Most of them consist of simply writing answers or coloring pictures. I (and my son) would like more interactive options like mazes, dot-to-dots, puzzles or crafts.

Overall Rating: Good. I think many families will find this book quite useful, but I do encourage direct parental involvement to avoid confusion.

Age Appeal:

Publisher Info:
Legacy Press, 2010; ISBN: 1885358970 ; Spiral-bound; 232 pages; $12.99

Buy it Now at for $10.99!

OR Buy it at for $12.99.

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Children's books said...

Looks like a book worth checking out at least!

Tanya said...

It is absolutely worth checking out! I spent four years in Bible college and, as a result, can be rather nitpicky when it comes to doctrine and biblical truth. In my attempts to offer honest, thorough reviews, I struggle not to get caught up in debatable details. It can be difficult! Thanks for seeing through my theological haze. ;)