By Chistine V. Hides
As my own children have grown, I have found the four-gift guideline very helpful (something you want, something you need, something to wear, something to read). While we’ve never followed it strictly, there is something very freeing about having permission to simplify Christmas. I love children’s books, which is why I am sharing a few ideas in the category of “something to read.” I chose these books because each of them have beautiful words and illustrations that help us learn to love God and each other. Since I couldn’t fit all of my favorites here, I recommend also taking a look at two newer publishers, Flyaway Books and Beaming Books, who offer engaging books that connect young readers with faith and the Bible.
Gift Books for Anytime:
Maybe God is Like That Too, by Jennifer Grant
For curious children who wonder about God, this story invites readers to journey through the city with a young boy who sees God in the same places we find we find love, joy, peace, patience kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control.
When God Made You, by Matthew Paul Turner
A perfect gift, told in rhyme, for the child you want tell just how very much that they are loved.
Preparing for the Season:
Look! A Child’s Guide to Advent and Christmas by Laura Alary
This book helps children prepare, wait and watch for God through traditions and stories of the season.
Room for a Little One: A Christmas Tale by Marin Waddell
In this version, told by the animals, “there is always room for a little one.”
Who is Coming to Our House, by Joseph Slate
Another tale of the animals preparing for Jesus, told in rhyme.
Christmas Books with Longer Text (great if you have older siblings):
Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski and P.J. Lynch
As the gloomy woodcarver creates a new nativity set for a widow and her son, a joyful miracle unfolds.
To Whom the Angel Spoke by Terry Kay
The story of Jesus birth told through the perspectives of three very different shepherds who tend to disagree.