Click here to listen to my Candidly Kendra podcast about The Jesus Storybook Bible:
For years I was under the impression that the main reason that we had the Bible was to learn how to live. To see what good things we should be doing, and the bad things we shouldn’t be doing. And then to do better by trying harder.
I read it that way in my devotional times, eager to learn about God’s standards and his holiness. I desperately hoped that if I read it enough, I would somehow find myself instinctively shedding my sinful desires and walking in greater obedience.
It didn’t work.
I threw up my hands and said, “Forget this! Nothing can make me sin less.”
That’s when God said, “Now, beloved. Now you are ready.” He brought many great teachers and books into my life. (I will be sharing those books with you over the next few weeks.)
But one of my favorites is the Jesus Storybook Bible.
Maybe you’ll like it as much as I do.
Every Story Whispers His Name
You may be thinking, “Kendra, I’m not four years old, and I don’t have a four year-old in my home. I’m pretty sure that a kids Bible storybook isn’t for me.”
But, friend, you would be so wrong. The Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones is exactly what you need in your devotional life.
The beauty of this book is that every story whispers the name of Jesus, our Rescuer, our Hero, the one who came to save. It’s right there on the front cover of the book!
This storybook Bible brings every story back to our Hero because he is the Center of God’s story. The Old Testament looked forward to his arrival, the beginning of the New Testament told us all about his life on earth and his teachings, and the rest of the New Testament was about the spread of the good news:
Look, world! The Rescuer has come!
How To Read This Book
I recommend that you read this book as a devotional. If you have young kids, by all means invite them to sit with you as you read aloud. If you don’t have young kids, though, you will still find your heart soaring with the love story of the Bible as you may have never felt it before. In fact, my kids call this “the book that makes mom cry.” Every story grips my heartstrings and leaves me in awe of our God.
But it’s not just an emotional rollercoaster. You will be intellectually awed by the way God has tied his whole story together so beautifully. He had love and he had a plan. And it is stunning.
To read The Jesus Storybook Bible as a devotional, read a chapter every day along with your favorite cup of coffee. Each chapter has a heading of the Bible chapters where you can find the story in Scripture. If you come to an unfamiliar story, read the story in your own Bible first, and then read the Jesus Storybook Bible story to help you see how the story whispers Jesus’ name and ties in with the greater story of salvation.
Jesus Storybook Bible Advent Reading
One beautiful option that my friend suggested is to read the Jesus Storybook Bible as a devotional for the advent season. If you read a chapter every day of December, then on Christmas Eve you will conclude advent with the arrival of the wise men to worship Jesus.
If that sounds interesting to you, but you want even more advent goodies, check out the free downloadable advent guide by author Sally Lloyd-Jones.
I hope that you’ll consider reading the Jesus Storybook Bible. You will be surprised how spiritually rich a “children’s book” can be!
Best Jesus Storybook Bible Quotes
- “Now, some people think the Bible is a book of rules, telling you what you should and shouldn’t do. The Bible certainly does have some rules in it. They show you how life works best. But the Bible isn’t mainly about you and what you should be doing. It’s about God and what he has done.” p. 14 (Introduction)
- “It takes the whole Bible to tell this Story. And at the center of the Story, there is a baby. Every Story in the Bible whispers his name. He is like the missing piece in a puzzle.”p. 17 (Introduction)
- “No matter what, in spite of everything, God would love his children – with a Never Stopping, Never Giving Up, Unbreaking, Always and Forever Love.” p. 36 (About The Fall)
- “It wasn’t long before everything went wrong again but God wasn’t surprised, he knew this would happen. That’s why, before the beginning of time, he had another plan – a better plan. A plan not to destroy the world, but to rescue it – a plan to one day send his own Son, the Rescuer.” p. 47 (About The Flood)
- “You see, God knew, however high they reached, however hard they tried, people could never get back to heaven by themselves. People didn’t need a staircase, they needed a Rescuer. Because the way back to heaven wasn’t a staircase; it was a Person.
“People could never reach up to Heaven, so Heaven would have to come down to them.
“And one day, it would.” p. 54 (About the Tower of Babel)
- “‘We can do it! Yes! We promise!’
“But they were wrong. They couldn’t do it…
“Only one Person could keep all the rules. And many years later God would send him – to stand in their place and be perfect for them.
“Because the rules couldn’t save them.
“Only God could save them.” p. 106-107 (About the Ten Commandments)
- “But God sent John to tell his people something important: ‘Stop running away from God and run to him instead,’ John said. ‘You need to be rescued. I have good news – the Rescuer is coming. Make your heats ready for him. Yes! Get ready, because your King is coming back for you.'” p. 202 (About John the Baptist)
- “It was the most natural thing in all the world. It’s what God had been doing from the beginning, of course. Taking the nothing and making it everything, Taking the emptiness and filling it up. Taking the darkness and making it light.” p. 249 (About the Feeding of the 5,000)
- “He knew then that the ending of The Story was going to be so great, it would make all the sadness and tears and everything seem like just a shadow that is chased away by the morning sun.” p. 348 (About Revelation)
- “You see, the most wonderful thing about this Story is – it’s your story, too!” p. 351 (From a paraphrase of John 1:12-13)
Final Thoughts on the Jesus Storybook Bible
I had to tear myself away from the book to stop writing those quotes before I typed out the entire book. It’s all just that good!
I’m grateful to Sally Lloyd-Jones for writing a book that reminds us that the entire story – OUR entire story – is really a story of a Rescuer bringing the people he loves back home.
Because, you see, he knows that we can’t do it. Trying harder isn’t the way to holiness. The Jesus Storybook Bible reminded me that what God really wants isn’t my perfection or my grit and determination. He wants me. So he sent the Rescuer to bring me home to him.