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I recently had the pleasure of receiving a wonderful children’s book to read and review (with some help from Binky Bear) titled The Awesome Super Fantastic Forever Party written by Joni Eareckson Tada. This book, which is beautifully illustrated by Catalina Echeverri, is ‘a true story about Heaven, Jesus and the best invitation of all.’ This is a wonderful book for young children, but also one to be loved by people of all ages. I honestly feel that this is a book that needs to be on everyone’s bookshelves! It’s an easy-to-read and easy-to-follow book which will help children to fully understand what it means when Jesus returns. It will help them to deepen their faith, to know God’s truth, and to get ready and excited for the coming of Jesus.
Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14.
I must admit, I’m a little picky when it comes to choosing books, even Christian books, because with these especially, I like to know that the book is full of truth, full of God’s truth and that it’s in line with the Bible. I think we have to be careful with what we allow ourselves to consume, and that includes books. I think when a book, and even a sermon for example, starts to sugar-coat things, to move away from what it really means to follow Jesus, what it really means to surrender, and how we can spend eternity in heaven with our Father, starts to become lost and the truth, even the hard truth, gets pushed to the side, to make things sound more pleasant and appealing. I think that’s when misunderstanding and misinterpretation starts to be delivered, and the truth starts to be watered down. Everyone must understand what it means to be saved, how to be saved and what it means to give their life to Jesus, and what it means for them if they don’t. Sometimes this can be a hard truth to take, but an important one, and one that people must know.
Just a couple of pages in, we have the words, ‘Everyone who believes in me as their King and Rescuer will have life, with me, forever.’ In verses, John 3:16-18, Jesus says the following:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.”
This is a wonderful message to have at the beginning of this book, and importantly, the author has included it at the beginning. As I mentioned above, we can easily consume things that have been coated with sugar, but it’s so important to remember that it’s when we fully believe, and when we ask Jesus to be our Lord and Saviour, when we surrender and trust and obey, we have eternal life with God, our Father, in Heaven. This book is written in a way that is easily readable and easy-to-follow for a young child, whilst still bringing in the truth of God’s Word.
I really like that Joni ends the book with, in reference to the Book of Revelation, the words, “Please come quickly, Jesus!” How wonderful and amazing it will be when Jesus returns. This is definitely something we should all be looking forward to. I love these beautiful words from Joni:
“I wrote this book because I love Jesus, and I want others to love Him too. I also live in a wheelchair and am looking forward to the wonderful day described in Isaiah 35:10: “They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.” The Bible promises that one day I will rise from my wheelchair and enter heaven happy and dancing.” Joni Eareckson Tada.
One thing I would have really loved to have seen more of in this book, are more Bible verses throughout the pages, to go alongside the author’s words written throughout the book. I think this would be a great way to help children get into God’s Word more, and to encourage them to memorise verses. Especially if a child has their own children’s Bible, I think this is a great way for them to look up the Bible references and follow along.
This is a great book for a child starting out in their journey of faith. Although this book does touch on sin in certain parts, I feel a good follow-on from this book would be for children to understand more on what sin is, especially as we are told to turn away from sin, repent and to pick up our cross and follow Jesus. We can’t fully follow Jesus if we are still living in sin. As it says in Proverbs 22:6, “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.”
Overall, this is a truly wonderful book about Jesus, Heaven and accepting Jesus as our Lord and Saviour. A lovely and engaging book for parents to share with their children, and to start them on their own journey of faith. There is also a free party guide to download to host your very own forever party. There’s a bunch of free downloads, including a host’s guide, colouring sheets, giant illustrations, fun activities to do and recipes. You can also claim 2 free bonuses when you pre-order the storybook. There is also the The Awesome Super Fantastic Forever Party Art and Activity Book that you can purchase which goes alongside the storybook. I really look forward to finding out more about Joni’s other books which, along with the book mentioned in this blog post, are all in a series of books titled Tales That Tell The Truth.
I was sent a copy of The Awesome Super Fantastic Forever Party free of charge to read and review, and this post contains my own honest thoughts and opinion.
What are some of your most favourite Christian children’s books?