I've thought a lot throughout my pregnancy about how Nate and I will develop our child's faith. We're both Christian and feel that Sunday school lessons have a lot to offer, but there's really something to be said for a parent being involved in teaching their children about God. Some of my best childhood memories are of my mom reading to me at night, and the stories she shared about God's love are the ones that made a big impact and stuck with me the most. God Gave Us So Much by Lisa Tawn Bergren is an excellent, touching story that I can absolutely see fitting in as a cherished part of my child's bedtime stories.
God Gave Us So Much is three books in one: God Gave Us the World, God Gave Us Love and God Gave Us Heaven.
God Gave Us the World helps explain why every creature is different and explores the vast, varying world that God created. These concepts are explained through a mama bear telling her cubs why there are so many types of bears and how they all live. This story is a great way to help children develop a concept of a world larger than their immediate surroundings, and will help children appreciate the diversity of the universe and the vast capabilities of God.
God Gave Us Love focuses on a grandpa bear explaining to a cub that while God meant for us to love all creatures, there are different types of love: the love between parents, the love between friends and family, and the love of God. This story helps children understand the concept of God's love by bringing it down to a level they can easily relate to.
God Gave Us Heaven explains what seems to me to be the most difficult concept of the series: the idea of a place better than anything we can ever experience on earth. Papa bear explains the idea of death in a gentle manner, reassuring the cubs that while sometimes bad things do happen on earth, they shouldn't worry because nothing bad ever happens in heaven. He briefly attempts to explain that we don't get to be angels in heaven and that Jesus is a “bridge” to heaven. To me, this seems a bit obscure and I would anticipate that curious children will need further explanation of these concepts. However, this section is a good conversation starter for parents who are prepared to explore the idea of heaven with their children.
I really enjoyed the dialogue throughout this beautiful book, and the illustrations are adorable! I would highly recommend the treasury to anyone looking to explore faith and God with their children. I think it would be most appropriate for children ages 4-8.
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. All opinions are my own.