by Heather Bock
I don’t normally publish posts on Sundays, especially after I have just published one the Saturday before. However, I have been given a great opportunity I didn’t want to pass up.
My almost eight-year-old daughter was thrilled to find the hardback Brave Beauty in the box that came from the publishers. Instantly attracted to the cover of brightly colored flowers and butterflies, she immediately carried it off to her room, opening it and reading. As a dedicated writer, she was delighted to find places where she was asked to write details about herself. When I asked her what she thought of the book, she said, “It’s like the author is talking right to me!” The book felt personable and inviting.
I had already been looking for a devotional book for my daughter–the first she would own. I knew she needed more than the Bible reading she was doing on her own. She needed something to help her apply the Word. This book was the perfect answer for me: each of the 100 mini-chapters is the right length for Little E to read once a day along with her chapter of Scripture. I also love the subject of the book–learning how to be brave through Christ in the knowledge of who God says you are. This is exactly what I pray she’ll become. Apparently, this book was written for a wide range of girls in mind–all the way to teens, but it has applied to my almost eight-year-old very well so far.
A few days later, she was excited when another box arrived, inside of which was something else in her taste. It was a tiny, light pink, leather-bound NIV Bible called the Faithgirlz Backpack Bible. Unfortunately for her, since she already has her own Bible, this one won’t belong to her. I like that not only is this Bible cute, attracting a young girl to the words of God, but it also has 12 pages inside with good messages for girls this age. It’s nice that Christ’s words are in red and that it easily lies flat–helpful if you have a daughter like mine who gets readily annoyed at books that close up on her as she reads them.
Among others, it encourages girls to promise to always:
- “focus on my inner beauty
- focus on the inner beauty of others
- remember that God loves me always
- seek God’s will in all that I do”
At first, I was disappointed by the message on the front, which reads, “Follow your heart.” The Bible is clear that “the heart is more deceitful than all else / And is desperately sick; Who can understand it?” (Jer. 17:9). Our heart without Jesus is selfish and fallen. Following her own heart is not at all a lesson I want to give to my daughter.
However, after reading the messages spelled out more clearly inside, stating that we are to seek God’s will instead of our own, I believe the front can be understood in a different way. Instead of “follow your heart,” I would choose to read it (and teach any young girl to read it) as “follow Your heart”–in other words, follow God’s heart. With this made clear, I believe this Bible would be a blessing for a young girl to receive.
I am about to start a drawing for another giveaway this week (on Wednesday, so come back to check it out–it’s a good one), so I won’t be giving either of these books away yet, but I do have one copy of Brave Beauty and two copies of the Faithgirlz Backpack Bible that I will give away before Christmas, so if you have a preteen in your life that might benefit from one of these, keep an eye out!