All of this talk about Advent has sparked lots of fun questions from readers. One of which was to a request for a list of the books that I share with my children. Of course, there are so many wonderful books on the market, this list is just a sampling of our favorites. Please leave some of your favorites in the comments so we can all enjoy!
Books that tell the story of Jesus…
This is my absolute favorite Christmas book. The story looks at each of baby Jesus’ features: fingers, feet, shoulders, mouth, arms, knees and heart. First we see how precious He was as a baby and then how He used these features to serve and love others. For example, his wrinkly, knobby knees were the same knees that knelt before the Father in submission to the cross. It’s a beautiful story and brings me to tears every time we read it.
This book is a classic repetitive rhyming story that accurately tells of Jesus’s birth. The illustrations are full of beautiful colors and I love the way that Joseph is depicted as patient, wise, and guarding his family.
This is another rhyming book that simply and plainly tells the story of Jesus’ birth. The illustrations are very different than the book above, but still beautiful.
The First Night is a very simple text book for even the youngest of hearts. The story tells of that special night with precious illustrations to follow.
We believe in Christmas follows a family around town and through life as they celebrate Christmas through all of the normal activities. Each page shows how to look for and find Christ in the season. It highlights a Christmas play at church, bell ringers, decorating the tree, carolers, etc. On one page, there is a depiction of Santa. This page says (And should they whisper “I believe” when sitting on his knee, whisper, ” I believe this more,” and there Christmas will be.”) The illustrations are lovely and I simply love the heart behind it.
Books that tell the story of Jesus with a fictional element…
This story is a fictional representation of the story of Jesus. The boy, Jacob is a gifted carpenter who builds a trough that just so happens to be needed for a resting place for the KING. The illustrations are beautiful and the story is precious. Most of the book is Biblically accurate, with the story of Jacob being a realistic, but fictional event.
The Crippled Lamb is one of the kids’ most beloved story. It is also a fictional representation of the story of Jesus’ birth. Joshua, the little lamb is deemed worthless due to a crippled leg, but God has a special plan for him. On that special night, he is needed to keep the King warm when all the other lambs were out in the field.
Clopper is engaging for all ages. It is fictional in the sense that the donkey is talking to us; however the story of Jesus’ birth is not compromised. The illustrations are bright and fun and each page contains a scroll with corresponding scripture. The thing I really like about this book is the interpretation that the donkey puts on the story, causing the reader to think about the stench of the barn, the cold of the night, and the excitement of the moment.
Books that explain the symbols of Christmas…
I love this board book series from Zondervan publishing. Not pictured are two more titles: My Christmas Stocking and Christmas Angels. The books are simple enough for young learners and perfect for beginning readers.These books are not deep theologically speaking, but we have enjoyed them greatly.
If you don’t own this book, I would highly encourage you to add it to your wish list. A quiet man becomes the talk of the town when he opens a new candy store on Christmas Eve. His gift to all is a beautiful candy cane, designed to tell the story of Jesus’ birth through the staff and the story of His death through the stripes. It’s a must-have book for any Christmas collection.
Books that tackle the question of Santa…
I absolutely adore the pictures in this book. The love between the momma bear and her cub is precious, but momma’s love for Jesus shines through in the most beautiful of ways. In the story, Little cub wonders if Santa invented Christmas. Momma takes him on a journey to see the magnificence of the world that God created and the gift of his Son, the Light of the World and the Bright Morning Star. It’s beautiful!
I am very fond of this series of books. The author tackles many difficult subjects that Christians face when they chose to celebrate a little differently than the rest of the world. In this particular story, Mom and Rachel are baking sugar cookies when Rachel expresses her confusion over how Santa fits in with the story of Jesus’ birthday. Mom takes her through a historical journey explaining the story of St. Nicholas and how that evolved into the modern day version of Santa.
Stories that highlight Jesus through other means…
This series is another one of my favorites. There is one written for just about every holiday. It’s full of scripture and a beautiful lesson. In the Pine-tree Parable, a farmer grows Christmas trees to support his family. One day, the family gives up their prize tree to a family in need. The story is such a beautiful picture of God’s love for us in the gift of Christmas.
This story isn’t about Christmas exactly, but it’s such a sweet winter story of a snowflake who has trouble believing that she is as beautiful as the others. Through the story she learns that God created all things beautifully and wonderfully and that she has a special purpose just the way God created her.
This story is a beautiful tale of generosity. A young man is given a special candle that shines on people and shows their true need compelling the man to help.
A few stories that aren’t about Jesus, but are still super fun…
We enjoy the story of the Nutcracker and this particular book is just right. The illustrations are gorgeous and there is just enough story to captivate.
Jan Brett is one of my favorite authors as her stories entertain any age and her illustrations are beautifully unique. She has many books centered around the holidays. Some with Santa, some without. Personally, we love the 12 Days of Christmas and all of the Gingerbread books that she has written.
Please, share your favorites with us!