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Bless the Lord: The 103rd Psalm Hardcover – January 1, 2005

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Editorial Reviews


Her message is clear-- Extol virtue and eschew evil. All throughout the book there is that deep sense of gratitude she causes us to think about. While the illustrations will warm your heart, the scriptures shout out His Glorious praises through her fingers. What are the illustrations telling us? Whether you are a homemaker, writer, father--- serve the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind while you live. As you read each scripture and look at the corresponding illustration, you will see many benefits God has blessed you with. Look at the ill child... you'll be reminded of the times you or your children were sick in bed. You'll remember how you recovered because God strengthened your frail body. Since we live in a culture that is ungrateful, you can't help but notice this ungodly attitude illustrated in some children's book. You can protect your children's eyes while feasting their eyes on virtuous illustrations. Place in front of your children's eyes the moral goodness that is inherent in this book. Parents can use this pictorial guide of the 103rd Psalm to teach their children to be grateful and forget not all His benefits. The art not only moves you to tears, but also causes you to think about your moral obligation to God out of a sincere heart that loves God. P.S. Johannah, I like the little purple bottle of echinacea sitting on the window sill. --Maribel Hernandez

How do I measure whether a picture book is any good? Usually with one simple test - The Again Test. After reading the book aloud, one of the children will say, Again! Read it Again! At the same time I won't be groaning inside thinking, No, Not Again! Then I know I've found a good book. Using that rigorous standard, Johannah Bluedorn's book Bless the Lord passes with flying colors. When we first received the book, my nine year old daughter just stared at the cover illustrations and said, Wow! I knew then this book would be special. The pages inside are made of heavy weight paper. That quality is important to me. A good picture book needs to stand up to multiple turnings. And trust me, you'll want to turn the pages again and again in this book. The words are taken directly from the King James Version of the 103rd Psalm. Accompanying each verse is an absolutely beautiful illustration depicting old-fashion family life. The pages are bright and colorful, holding the interest of even my youngest child. As I read the verse, she often traces her fingers over one of the animals or tries to count the flowers in the border. Each time we snuggle up to read, we notice something different in the pictures. More importantly, because she wants to read the book again, we have memorized the 103rd Psalm without much effort at all. This book is the second in a series. The first was The Lord Build the House: The 127 Psalm. She has also published Little Bitty Baby Learns Hebrew, The Story of Mr. Pippin, and my personal favorite My Mommy My Teacher -- the story of a day with a homeschooling farm family. Johannah Bluedorn was homeschooled and self taught in art. I would encourage all who are looking for quality children's literature to check out Johannah Bluedorn's books. Around here they have become favorites. Each one quietly demanding to be read again and again.

Johannah Bluedorn has done it again. Bless the Lord is the second in what I hope will be a very long series of illustrated Psalms. The text of the book is simply the King James version of the 103rd Psalm, and the breathtaking illustrations do much to bring the words of the psalmist to life. Our family loves what we call memory books - books whose entire text is Scripture, or a hymn, or poetry, or some other special work. As we engage in that most natural daily activity of snuggling up and reading, the text of these books is written forever in our hearts and minds. I am sure that most mothers and their children can recite the words of Goodnight Moon or Madeline or Mike Mulligan and the Steam Shovel. We never set out to memorize these books, but through sheer joyful repetition we hid their words in our hearts and will never forget them. In just this way, Bless the Lord works to impress the words of Psalm 103 upon our children's hearts. The grace and charm of the illustrations will draw your children to this book over and over, while the winsomeness of the artwork clearly communicates the value and loveliness of God's Word. This book will put wholesome beauty before your children's eyes, and it will fill their souls with the majesty of the Creator. --Kate Estes at

About the Author

Johannah Bluedorn Stanford was homeschooled by her parents and is self-taught in art and skilled in the use of a variety of media. She is the author and illustrator of several popular children's books including Little Bitty Baby Learns Hebrew, Little Bitty Baby Learns Greek, My Mommy My Teacher, The Lord Builds the House: The 127th Psalm, and The Story of Mr. Pippin (all published by Trivium Pursuit), and From Dark to Dawn: A Tale of Martin Luther and the Reformation and Raising Maidens of Virtue (both published by Books on the Path). Johannah is married and lives with her husband Adam Stanford in Green Valley, Illinois. She is currently working on a children's picturebook titled A is for Amicus, a Latin vocabulary alphabet book.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Trivium Pursuit (January 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1933228024
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933228020
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 8.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #779,094 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Misty Forest on October 1, 2005
Snuggle up with someone you love as you slowly turn through these pages filled with not quite Victorian and not quite country - but a mixture of the two that creates a very down home sweetness that is simply irresistible. This is the perfect bedtime book if there ever was one! Young children, grandparents and all ages in between will be captivated by the sheer joy, love and intricate detail Johannah Bluedorn has placed in each illustration. Just when you are ready to turn the page, another intriguing image will catch your attention for yet another long, enjoyable study of a delightful scene.

Each page is graced with earthly beauty which is based on the scriptures found throughout the 103rd Psalm. Only Johannah has given it deeper meaning. She has taken to heart each and every word King David wrote and placed those words into our homes, our families, our very lives. She has done this in such a humble, simple way by creating vivid illustrations of home and daily life that reflects the wisdom in the verse she uses.

The beauty and exquisite detail found in each illustration captures the reader's attention and continues to hold it indefinitely page after page. It is simply impossible to take in the entire illustration at one glace, or even within several minutes. While you meditate on the verses found in the 103rd Psalm, you gaze over exquisite detail, grace and beauty on each and every page. What a very unique and simple way to memorize this special Psalm.

Whether it is a full page illustration, the details of which are unsurpassed in a child's picture book or a beautiful array of foliage with a glancing vignette to highlight the meaning of a verse the book is captivating and cries to be read again, and again, and again.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By M. Drews on February 3, 2006
In Bless the Lord, Johannah Bluedorn illustrates the true beauty of The 103rd Psalm (KJV) in lovingly detailed pictures. Some of her drawings remind me of the My First Little House books that I used to read with my boys. There is an innocence to Johannah's illustrations that kinda makes you *sigh*...but in a good way! The rich colors throughout the book make you just want to climb right in and make yourself at home!

I think that this is a great book to sit and read with your

children. Start your day out with it over breakfast or cuddle up with it at night before bed. They will enjoy getting lost in the world that Johannah has created. My oldest son really enjoyed finding some of the "hidden treasures" in the pictures. He even noticed a couple things that I missed in my first three times through the book (hint: look in the trees)!

Another thing I really like about this book is the song at the end. Harvey Bluedorn wrote music so we can have a tune to Psalm 103-- how's that for talent in a single family?! We all know that it is much easier to memorize scripture when it is set to a tune! And with verse numbers notated in the score, you can easily pick out what verse of Psalm 103 you're singing.

This books sets a wonderful backdrop to the true poetry in God's Word. I can't wait to read (and view) Ms. Bluedorn's other books.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By John & Karen Woodward on February 9, 2006
Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name.

Any day of the year when I find myself discouraged, I go to the Psalms. There I always find comfort from God's word to sooth my troubled soul. Recently I discovered a wonderful book entitled Bless the Lord. The words are those penned by David when he wrote the 103rd Psalm. The illustrations are by Johannah Bluedorn. Johannah, a homeschool graduate, has a spectacular talent using beautiful colors and intricate details. On each page I find children, animals and people from days gone by. The art work is enchanting and I find it as soothing to my eyes as the words are to my soul.

Bless the Lord is a great addition to anyone's library. I read this book to my younger daughter and she pleaded for me to read it again. Meanwhile, my older daughter couldn't wait to peruse the pages herself. The book could easily be used for family devotions. I love the way Johannah has illustrated verse 12 with a little boy sitting on the beach, giving the sense that he is contemplating the vastness of the ocean and the greatness of our God. It could also be used as an encouragement for children to practice their own drawings. Johannah has written and illustrated several books and I hope there will be many more to come.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Angel on October 4, 2005
Upon receiving Bless the Lord: The 103rd Psalm, I sat down to read it with my seven year old daughter. I didn't want to just gauge my reaction to the book, I wanted to see how my daughter would respond to it as well. She loves to read and at her age the artwork in books really catches her eye. As soon as she saw the book in my hand she asked if she could hold it. She didn't put it down until she had looked at every illustration intently and we had read it two times.

I was impressed myself. The beauty of this book is hard to describe. It amazes me that Johannah Bluedorn taught herself art. Her work is a contrast of styles--Victorian and country provincial. The detail she brings to each and every illustration is astounding.

Children and grown-ups alike will truly enjoy this book. The beauty of the art in time with scripture is eloquent. Johannah has brought the 103rd Psalm alive in a way that you just can't imagine. You really have to see for yourself and I promise that you will not be disappointed. This is a book you will want to share with all the children in your life.
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