How Can I Help? God’s Calling for Kids
Comments and recommendations for books for reading to children, particularly books on the bible, history and good fiction
Here is C. S. Lewis dealing, parenthetically, with an issue which parents often ask about. I think he is exactly right.
“The question whether the disputed pencil belongs to Tommy or Charles is quite distinct from the question which is the nicer little boy, and the parents who allowed the one to influence their decision about the other would be very unfair. (It would be still worse if they said Tommy ought to let Charles have the pencil whether it belonged to him or not, because this would show he had a nice disposition. That may be true, but it is an untimely truth. An exhortation to charity should not come as rider to a refusal of justice. It is likely to give Tommy a lifelong conviction that charity is a sanctimonious dodge for condoning theft and whitewashing favouritism.)”
- C. S. Lewis, Reflectionson the Psalms (New York: Harcourt, Brace, and World, 1958), 17-18.
Phil Eyster, a missionary, founder and president of Eagle Projects International, has been a dear friend of mine for about two decades and has been a regular encouragement to me in the realm of parenting and discipling my children. He recently posted this encouraging note about finishing their fifth reading of the entire Bible as a family. Phil is honest about the challenge of such a task and how long it takes with a large family across a wide range of ages. He writes:
I marvel now at the way she used to read to me—eight hours at a stretch sometimes, whole books in a day, her voice growing hoarse as the shadows lengthened and the room darkened and I sat alongside her in her bedroom listening to her every syllable with desperate attention, dreading the ring of the telephone in the next room (which of course would be my mother, to summon me home to dinner). We read everything—
a particular lilt crept into my great-grandmother’s voice when she sang and when she read to me aloud. It was dreamy and gorgeous to my ear, this special voice of hers, the very stuff of warmth and love; it was, I believed, peculiar to her alone of all the world, a voice which, like a cat’s purr, was specific to hearth and home, reserved for her dearest ones. Not until I was older—and, rather to my shock, heard the private lullaby voice being spoken in public by a perfect stranger on a television program—did I realize that the beloved musicality which for many years I’d confidently believed was mine alone was in fact a Scots accent.