children’s Bible adventure {& recommendation}

i love God’s Word.  i believe it is the ultimate authority on all things… & i try to honor it with my life.  (no doubt, failing… but still believing it is the Truth & i am the inconsistent follower).

and my earnest heart cry is that our sprouts will also recognize the power of the Word & that it too will transform their hearts, minds & guide their actions.

{i’m sure you can already tell i’m a bit passionate about the Word & so this is a forewarning that my passion & following critique is NOT meant to offend…}

so, in accordance with my (read: our) convictions we began our parenting journey reading The Big Picture Story Bible with Sterling each night.  more specifically, the first chapter.  the intent was to establish God’s authority & goodness.  when we referred to our nightly reading i always referred to it as its entire title – never “the Bible”.  {i already forewarned you, i’m a bit serious about the Bible…}

overall we thoroughly enjoyed our years of reading (eventually completing the entire 2 book series multiple times) The Big Picture Story Bible.  no doubt it left out some great stories, after all it was only meant to be a brief overview of God’s big redemptive story.  i especially enjoyed the illustrator’s talent for making eden so gorgeous & the effects of humanity’s rebellion so obviously ugly.

naturally there came a time when our family, specifically Sterling, needed to grow in his understanding of who God is & so we began the arduous task of selecting a “children’s Bible”.  we selected various versions online & had them transported 1/2 a globe to us.  then based on the recommendations from highly respected ministry leaders we bought The Jesus Storybook Bible with high hopes it would meet our needs & expectations.  in all honesty, i was very disappointed.  like so many others before (& after) this version i was disturbed by the “artistic license” that the author used.  in an effort to make the “Bible stories” entertaining, the stories were pumped full of unnecessary & distracting fill-in-the-blank detail.  details that aren’t in the Bible.

after a few run-ins with this & a couple of other “kid-friendly versions” we ended up throwing out the text, summarizing the stories from the NIV while letting the sprouts enjoy the wide-range of illustrations.  as one might expect, this became more difficult as we sought to tell stories in a condensed & accurate way… on the fly.

even so, thinking there was no other option than to dive head over heels into His word, we broke down & bought him what seemed to be the coolest NIV available.  seriously… it’s so cool it’s waterproof!  so it was on his 5th birthday we gifted Sterling the Waterproof NIV Bible.  only problem was, it wasn’t until after i had inscribed his name & our love on the inside front cover that i discovered that though it is awesomely waterproof it is definitely not reader friendly.  at least not for me (or a young reader) as the print is tiny!  never mind the excessive weight of its awesome waterproof pages.  so, disappointed yet again, his much anticipated first real Bible was set to the side…

adding to our embarrassingly large pile of Bible story books & “Bibles”.

though i was thoroughly disappointed i was not deterred.

after much more research i found several Bibles – not storybooks – that were actually geared toward 5-12 year olds.  after selecting several for further research (read: get my hands on them PRIOR to making a purchase!) it became clear to me that the NIrV Adventure Bible is what i was looking for.  it’s specifically for “early readers” & so has simple language, yet containing the Truth.  i especially love the introductions to each of the books of the Bible as well as the “words to treasure” (key verses) & “live it” (how to apply the concepts in practical ways) sections.  of course, we just recently got this version so i haven’t done extensive research on it (ie. i haven’t read to see how they handle Song of Songs) but overall i feel very comfortable knowing we’re learning God’s word together.

super sterling & proud daddyIMG_7550


2 thoughts on “children’s Bible adventure {& recommendation}

  1. I respectfully disagree with your opinion on The Jesus Storybook Bible:)

    We LOVE The Jesus Storybook Bible. It doesn’t replace the actual Bible, or course, but we have so loved reading it together as a family, especially when our children were younger. It ties the story of Jesus beautifully even to Old Testament books. I still get teary eyed every time I read it, it is so touching.

    This Fall, Little Miss got her first NIV Bible. We were overwhelmed by all the options, but I let her pick one from ones that I thought would be a good fit. She picked a small purple NIV that zips together:)

  2. I hear and understand what you are saying. We have The Big Picture Story and The Jesus Bible Storybook as well. One Bible that we have have enjoyed reading and that you might be able to check out while you are in the states is The ESV Illustrated Family Bible. It is not the entire Bible but it is 270 stories and it uses the words of the Bible so it’s been a good one for family devotions. I have also found it hard with having older and younger kiddos…trying to figure out how to meet both needs and levels of understanding. There are so many options out there. Thanks for sharing! It can be overwhelming to try and choose one. Blessings to you!

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