10 Kids Easter Books for All Your Easter Baskets

Helping children catch and understand Easter joy can be as simple as choosing a book to add to an Easter basket or give as a gift. Here are 10 good choices for you to consider.

indexMy First Easter (Worthy Kids/Ideals). Bright photos of Spring and Easter objects, one per page. Includes a simple cross.

51GX+JRlazL._AC_US500_QL65_The First Easter (Zonderkidz). A little lamb tells the resurrection story.

610bjnWrX7L._SX497_BO1,204,203,200_My Easter Basket (B&H Kids). Links the colors in a child’s Easter basket to a simple telling of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection.

71lJfWU4vmLThe Story of Easter (Worthy Kids/Ideals). A simple introduction to the meaning of the day—Jesus loves us.

61ZtS8jdIyL._SX381_BO1,204,203,200_      978-1-4964-0311-7

Jesus Lives! and Easter Surprises (Tyndale Kids). Both with stickers for completing the illustrations and other activities too. These books are a wonderful value.

71tS2bIh2wLThe Sparkle Egg (Worthy Kids/Ideals, above) and The Legend of the Easter Robin (Zonderkidz, below). Picture books for elementary grades both focus on God’s love and forgiveness.


51vqC9wn1hL._AC_US500_QL65_My Friend Jesus (Thomas Nelson) introduces elementary-aged kids to the story of Jesus and having a personal relationship with Him.

HFEDKHope for Each Day: 365 Devotions for Kids (Tommy Nelson). Short daily devotions for children and families too.



Read through the Bible—Week 12

wgrb17textJohn ends his Gospel with his purpose for writing, and Moses provides a “second law”–a second telling of the law—in Deuteronomy.

Day 1     John 16-18
Day 2     John 19-21
Day 3     Deuteronomy 1-3
Day 4     Deuteronomy 4-6
Day 5     Deuteronomy 7-9
Day 6     Deuteronomy 10-12
Day 7     Deuteronomy 13-15

Well-Nourished—by the Word

file000667247480Do you take a multivitamin or use a dietary supplement? I have, and now I keep some Ester-C and echineacha tea on hand to help me fight off colds. But day to day, I’m trying to nourish my body with a whole-foods, plant-based diet.

It’s a challenge to view vegetable and fruits, nuts and seeds as staples when they’ve been sides for so many years.

But it’s getting easier. And I feel better when I eat this way.

Why am I telling you this?

Because just as nourishing myself with physical food can be a struggle (do I want to chop up all these vegetables to roast for dinner, or could we just go out for pizza? . . .), choosing to “feed” on God’s Word can be a battle too.

Each Sunday I’ve been posting a schedule for reading through the Bible in a year, from my book A Woman’s Guide to Reading the Bible in a Year. Reading the entire Bible and discussing it weekly with a women’s group impacted my life in so many wonderful ways. It also proved the value of the practice of reading the Bible daily.

Probably because, as someone has said, “The Bible is the only book whose Author is present with you when you read it.”

But this year I’ve been struggling. Not just to read God’s Word, but to want to. Ugh.

Too much going on? Health issues in the way? Seemingly unending cold winter days devoid of sunlight? All of the above.

A sermon here, a few chapters there, an online search of verses related to a writing project . . . I’m in the Word, right?

But I’m starving.

Last night and this morning, I picked up a Bible in a different translation than I normally read. I checked the reading schedule and jumped back in. I asked the Holy Spirit to give me insight.

I read slowly, as if enjoying a health-giving meal that I didn’t want to end too soon.

If I want to make God’s wonders known to the next generation—and I do—I need the life-giving nourishment and power He spreads out for me every day. To see consistent time in His Word as the daily staple of my life, not a side.

How about you? (You don’t have to read through the Bible in a year. But pick a Bible book to read slowly several times, or a Bible study you’ve been wanting to explore. Listen to an audio Bible as you drive or run. Ask a friend to read with you and check in with each other during the week.)

We have an enemy who wants us weak and hungry.

But we have a Father who makes us strong and full.


Read through the Bible—Week 11

wgrb17textAfter finishing up in Numbers, this week turns to the John’s Gospel—a studied look at the One who is the way, the truth, and the life.

Day 1     Numbers 31-33
Day 2     Numbers 34-36
Day 3     John 1-3
Day 4     John 4-6
Day 5     John 7-9
Day 6     John 10-12
Day 7     John 13-15

Read through the Bible—Week 10

wgrb17textIn Numbers all this week. The Israelites are preparing to enter the Promised Land—and bearing the consequences of not trusting God.

Day 1     Numbers 10-12
Day 2     Numbers 13-15
Day 3     Numbers 16-18
Day 4     Numbers 19-21
Day 5     Numbers 22-24
Day 6     Numbers 25-27
Day 7     Numbers 28-30

A New Devotional for Kids by Billy Graham and a GIVEAWAY


I have two copies of Hope for Each Day: 365 Devotions for Kids to give away to readers on my mailing list. If you’re already signed up, you’re automatically entered! To join the list and be entered in the giveaway, just enter your name and email address in the box at the left.

When you sign up, you’ll also receive a free PDF download, “10 Simple Ways to Grow a Bible Reader (Without Being a Bible Scholar Yourself!)”

Giveaway starts March 1 and ends at 11:59 PM Monday, March 6. I’ll announce the winners in a newsletter that goes out on March 8.

HFEDKIf you’d like to add five minutes with your kiddos focused on the gospel and God’s Word each day—maybe during breakfast, after dinner, or just before bed—this new devotional by Billy Graham could be just the tool you need.

Hope for Each Day: 365 Devotions for Kids is updated version of a classic Billy Graham devotional for adults, adapted and prepared especially for kids.

I did the adaptation for the publisher, Tommy Nelson. It was an honor—I was working with the words of Billy Graham! It was a struggle at times too—I was working with the words of BILLY GRAHAM!

I did NOT want to mess up.

Fortunately, a project like this goes through several layers of editing, revisions, and approvals. I’m thoroughly happy with the results!

Working on this book I began to think of Billy Graham being like the apostle Paul—never an easy life, perhaps sometimes downcast, but never wavering in belief in the gospel and commitment to the Lord, and always wanting to tell as many people as possible about Jesus!

What comes through loud and clear in Hope for Each Day: 365 Devotions for Kids? Devoted faith in Jesus Christ, in what God has done through Him, and a clear call to accept the gospel that gives us hope—hope for today and hope for every day, forever!

Hope for Each Day: 365 Devotions for Kids releases March 7. That’s coming up soon but if you don’t want to wait, you can preorder now from the publisher and other online retailers.

Want to preview the contents? You can see some of it here.



Read through the Bible—Week 9

wgrb17textWe finish up Luke this week. Knowing what lies ahead, Jesus enters Jerusalem with much acclaim. As we begin the book of Numbers, the Israelites prepare to enter the Promised Land.

Day 1     Luke 13-15
Day 2     Luke 16-18
Day 3     Luke 19-21
Day 4     Luke 22-24
Day 5     Numbers 1-3
Day 6     Numbers 4-6
Day 7     Numbers 7-9

How to Choose Bible Storybooks Kids Will Love

One of my grandsons reading Words to Dream On two years ago

One of my grandsons reading Words to Dream On two years ago

A friend wrote this weekend with stories about her grandkids and their love for their story Bibles.

Whenever she’s visiting at night, my friend wrote, she takes part in the nightly bedtime story routine of her three young grandsons. Sometimes she listens in, usually she does the reading.

“Their routine is to read one secular book and then from Rumble! Zap! Pow!” she wrote.The kids know all the stories, and I love that.”

Valentine treat bags for her granddaughters included Bible action figures of David and Moses my friend had found at Dollar Tree.

“The oldest got Moses,” my friend’s email continued. “She ran upstairs to get her Sweetest Story Bible, opened it to the story of Moses and the Ten Commandments, and read it aloud (she knew right where it was), with character voice inflections and all.”

This young girl keeps her Bible storybook by her bed and reads it at night when she has trouble falling asleep.

Rumble! Zap! Pow! and The Sweetest Story Bible are books I wrote, but that’s not what makes these simple stories precious and important. Instead, they represent

  • a grandmother who gives her grandchildren books that communicate God’s Word,
  • believing parents who value teaching their children to have faith in God,
  • children who are hearing the Scriptures that are “able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:15).

Yes, these children love their story Bibles. More important, they’re learning to know and love the One all the stories are about—and to know that He loves them!

Do you need help choosing the right Bible storybook for a child? Here are five tips:

1. Match the format to your child’s age and interest. Babies and toddlers enjoy board books
because they can turn the pages themselves. Books with long stories and more text than
illustration are best for older children. Most Bible storybooks for preschoolers and beginning
readers fall somewhere in between. Consider illustration too. Most children respond well to bright colors and a range of contemporary art styles—but contemporary doesn’t have to mean inaccurate. Older children can appreciate more realistic portrayals of Bible times.

2. Look at the Contents page. Are both Old and New Testament stories well represented? Do
the stories present the overall story arc of the whole Bible?

3. Read a story or two aloud. Does the writing flow well, with interesting rhythms? Is the
writing style appropriate for your child’s age and attention span? You’ll be reading from this
Bible storybook often. The experience should be a pleasant one for your child and for you too.
Do you want a straightforward retelling of the stories or a freer style with more
embellishments? Both exist and both can be done with excellence.

4. Check out how the author handles hard topics, such as the devastation of the flood, the destruction of Jericho, or Jesus’ suffering and crucifixion. The Bible addresses some realities beyond the understanding of young children. Choose a Bible storybook that presents truths in
age-appropriate ways.

5. Choose the right “hook” for your child or your family. Some Bible storybooks feature activity ideas or talking points to go along with each story—especially helpful to busy parents and parents unfamiliar with the Bible. New or beginning readers might want stories they can read with little or no help.Sometimes the hook might be application, or “life lessons.” But be careful! When Bible stories become stories about how to behave, children often determine that good behavior is the way to find acceptance with God, or decide that God couldn’t really love them because they aren’t good enough.

Would you like a printout of these tips? Download the free PDF “How to Choose a Bible Storybook.

Read through the Bible—Week 8

wgrb17textLeviticus finishes up with a focus on holiness in personal conduct, first for individuals and then for Israel’s priests. Then we turn to Luke’s Gospel, much of which reports Jesus’ teaching and miracles.

Day 1     Leviticus 19-21
Day 2     Leviticus 22-24
Day 3     Leviticus 25-27
Day 4     Luke 1-3
Day 5     Luke 4-6
Day 6     Luke 7-9
Day 7     Luke 10-12

Fun Facts and Books about the Presidents

Did you know that
• Thomas Jefferson invented the first chair that could spin around?
• John Quincy Adams kept his pet alligator in a bathtub in the White House?
• Theodore Roosevelt’s children once gave a pony a ride in the White House elevator?
• William Howard Taft was the first president to throw out the ball on baseball’s Opening Day?
• When he was a boy, George W. Bush dreamed of playing major league baseball?
61Jfhu+W2PLI discovered all this and more in Grover Cleveland, Again!: A Treasury of American Presidents, by Ken Burns (Knopf Books for Young Readers). The title comes from the response of the author’s young daughters as they played a memory game with their dad. Grover Cleveland is the only one of the presidents who served two nonconsecutive terms of office.

In the introduction, Ken Burns says,

In this book, in addition to describing the important things that the presidents did when they were in office, I talk about who they were as people. After all, presidents have birthdays and brothers and sisters and even pets, just like everybody else! There are also fascinating stories of things that happened to them on their road to the presidency—stories that tell us a lot about their times.

Richly illustrated, this is a book to pour over again and again.

5803cb51-277b-4235-bb9b-b54d75847d5a.jpg._CB284907560_Add this one to your family’s library or check it out at the library for a new way to celebrate President’s Day, coming up next week.

Look for these two also: I am Abraham Lincoln and I am George Washington, by Brad Meltzer (Dial Books).

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Part of Meltzer’s series “Ordinary People Change the World,” the books let us see these two great leaders as children and show us that anyone can grow up to make a big difference.

Books like these three help our kids and grandkids develop respect for the office of president, along with the understanding that all leaders are ordinary people in need of wisdom and prayer.

That’s something we grownups could think about as President’s Day approaches too.

“First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior” (1 Timothy 2:1-3 ESV).