Book Review—The Whole Story for the Whole Family: A Year of Jesus-Centered Family Devotions

There may not be two other words that strike more fear in the hearts of parents than the words family devotions.

We know family time around the Bible is important. But we have questions: Can we make the time? Can we do a good job? Where would we start?

The Whole Story for the Whole Family is a good place to begin.

The book is set up to help families of school-age children explore key Bible events and passages in chronological order four times a week for one year. (But of course you could stretch this out over 18 months or two years if you’d like).

Each devotion follows the same pattern:

Show: a simple object lesson to capture attention and start conversation
Read: the reference for the day’s Scripture text
Explain: basic background and commentary on the text parents
Reflect: three questions for families to consider together
Pray: a simple prayer to close the devotion time

Throughout, the goal is to help kids understand the whole story of the Bible, build confidence in God and His Word, and create discipline and interaction around the Word that results in greater love for God.

I don’t understand the use of “Jesus-centered” in the subtitle, as most of the devotions on Old Testament passage don’t seem to include a focus on Jesus, although some do. (Parents also should be aware that none of the devotions in the book draw from the books of Leviticus or Job or any of the letters of the apostles.)

But any parent struggling to get started with family devotions or to remain consistent will find excellent help, motivation, and encouragement here.

The Whole Story for the Whole Family
written by Michael Kelly
published by B&H Books (2021)
hardcover, 5.7 x 1.4 x 8.8 inches, 448 pages

Making God’s wonders known to the next generation,

– Diane

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