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4 Things to Look for In Devotional Book for Children Plus a Giveaway

I was given a copy of Devotions off the Map from Family Christian for this review. All opinions are my own.

An internet search for a “devotional book for children” will yield you thousands of results. There are as many styles devotional for children and giveawayand types of books as there are children it seems. So how do you know what children’s devotional book will be a good fit for your family and your child?

Here are 4 questions you can ask as you decide which devotional book for children is right for your family?

4 Questions to Ask When Buying A Devotional and a giveaway

1   Does it gloss over Truth with cute stories?

Our children need meat, not just milk. A children’s devotional book should address issues age appropriately but it should not gloss over truth with cutesy stories or patronize a child and leave out important issues.

2   Does it address real issues?

Often times a devotional book for children and other books skip the hard parts and the reality of a hard life and opt to make the life of a Christian seem easy and peaceful. A good devotional book for children will give Truth and a good mixture of hard topics we face along with the message of hope.

3   Does it open the door for discussion?

A devotional book for children should be a springboard for discussion. Does the devotional leave your child thinking about what they have read and how they can apply it or does it spoon feed them a few thoughts? A devotional that opens the door for discussion and application is an excellent resource.

4   Does it grow with your child or is it good for only one age?

There are many devotional books for children that fit will with the first three questions but are only good for one age or stage of childhood. But a devotional that can grow with your child will have value for several years. Look for one that you can use multiple times over the course of your child’s time at home. This allows you to give meat, age appropriately over time but be consistent with the message.

My Children’s Devotional Choice

Counting ebooks, I probably have ten children’s devotional books in my library. Some meet a few of the criterial above, some don’t meet any but only one meets them all.

I started a devotional with Wyatt several months ago only to find I had to edit as I was reading. It said things like “healing will definitely come” without addressing that it might not come this side of Heaven. Jesus absolutely took the stripes so we could be healed but that does not mean every person is healed here on Earth. Not sharing the full truth sets a child up for false hope and I was not comfortable with that.

We’ve put that one aside and we’re not reading through Devotions Off the Map, a 52-Week Devotional Journey. This colorful and meat-filled devotional answers “Yes” to all of the above questions.

 

Devotions Off the Map takes your child on a journey, mapping out the necessities they’ll need for a life devoted to Christ. The devotional is broken down into sections:

  • Prepping for Your Journey – gathering what you need for the road ahead
  • Following Your Guide – relying on Jesus and realizing He is dependable
  • Making Camp – building strong relationships with fellow travelers
  • Detours and Roadblocks – addressing the problems we face
  • Souvenirs for Your Journey – ways to live your life and use what you know

Devotions Off the Map answers yes to sharing Truth not just cute Bible stories. In fact, there are few classic stories in this devotional. Instead, there are real-life scenarios such as dealing with death, fear, memorizing scripture and sharing the Gospel.

Each day has a core truth or principle called The Overlook and at least 5 scripture to back up and support the week’s topic.  Discussion is fostered with questions that are great for various ages.

Perhaps the best part is the application section called Walking on Bolder Bridge. Here there are practical ways you can have your child apply what they are learning. For younger children you can pick what they may do but for older children who are reading on their own this is a chance to practice what they are learning. The choices range from additional scripture memorization to asking parents questions to choosing spiritual goals.

This book easily grows with your child from Pre-K through the early teen years and possibly beyond. Hands down this is the best devotional I’ve found to keep children engaged and yet address issues without patronizing kids and dumbing down the message of Truth our children so desperately need in this time.

This book is perfect of meeting the needs of your homeschool or before school devotions.  It’s extensive enough to be your entire devotions curriculum or a nice base for adding additional activities through the week related to the topic.

The weekly format means you can focus on a topic and really dig in during the week and the questions and action items given help drive home the message.

I really want you to have a copy of this devotional and I’m so excited that Family Christian is offering a $25 Appreciation Certificate to one lucky winner. Of course, you can buy whatever you want with the certificate but if you’re looking for a new devotional to kick off the school year here’s a chance to possibly pick up Devotions Off the Map and maybe something else too. The devotional is reasonably priced at $12.99 so if you win, you still have over $10 left to spend! It will be available from Family Christian on August 1st, 2015 but you can prebuy it any time.

 

How do you incorporate devotions into your child(ren)’s day?

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Comments

  1. Mealtime prayers and discussions and bedtime story time.

  2. Practical tips and thoughts! Thanks!

  3. We do a family Bible time every morning and evening, but it’s always nice to have a new resource to try!

  4. Tammy Cordery says:

    We like to do our devotional at night before we go to bed.

  5. Jennifer Mathesz says:

    We try to incorporate it in every morning whether it’s a devotion, bible reading, or just prayer

  6. Abbey Land says:

    I’m so glad you found this book enjoyable! I had a great time writing it and incorporating real-life situations out of my own life and with my boys. Thanks for such kind, encouraging words!

Trackbacks

  1. […] If so Devotions Off the Map – A 52 Week Devotional Journey  by Dandi Mackall might be the perfect choice to add to your library. I recently had the opportunity to preview this book from the publisher B & H Kids. Right from the cover, this book has eye appeal with all of its vibrant colors, which are found throughout the book.  Today’s youth have more things flashing and grabbing for their attention than I ever did when I as growing up, which is why I like  that this devotional is in full color and has beautiful illustrations.  Now when considering a devotional you are hoping for something more than just pretty but something of substance as well. I found the book to strike a nice balance between the two.  Danielle writes a great article on 4 questions to ask when considering a devotional for your child. […]

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