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Unwrapping the Greatest Gift: A Family Celebration of Christmas Hardcover – Unabridged, November 1, 2014
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From the Back Cover
Unwrap the greatest Gift with your family this Advent season!
Person by person, story by story, retrace the lineage of Jesus. Fall in love with Him all over again as you experience God’s plan of salvation for us―from the Garden of Eden to the manger and beyond.
With vivid, full-color illustrations, downloadable ornaments, and moving scenes from the Bible, this book is a gift your whole family can unwrap each day leading up to Christmas.
Each devotion includes the following:
- Scripture readings to go along with each story
- Questions and activities to engage the entire family
- Beautiful illustrations to further enhance each reading
About the Author
Ann Voskamp is wife of one good farmer, the home-educating mama to a half-dozen exuberant kids, and author of New York Times bestsellers, The Greatest Gift and One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are. Named by Christianity Today as one of 50 women most shaping culture and the church today, and a partner with Compassion International as a global advocate for needy children, Ann's a regular loser of library books, usually has a sink full of soaking pots, sees empty laundry baskets rarer than a blue moon, and believes that the sky and fresh mercy over the farm is large and all is grace. Her blog, one of the Top 10 Christian blogs on the web, has become a daily well for the weary and soul-thirsty.
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1) Foremost, she is interposing her own interpretation of Scripture. In many cases, it appears to be erroneous. For instance, we read about the flood tonight. There was no mention of God's anger. It was all about love. I know, I know--I haven't read the entire book, but after browsing it, I just see more the same--lots of commentary and summation of Scripture. And, here's the alarming part--she mixes her words with words from Scripture, and then just puts a reference at the end. So, one (particularly kids) does not know which is which.
2) Verbose to the max. Everyone--including my literature-loving self--was distracted within a minute of this reading. The sentence structure is overly complex, as if she's trying too hard to be poetic. It was not very engaging.
If you're looking for something that solely seeks the truths of Scripture while engaging little ones, you will find more satisfaction in this humble, yet superbly done book: http://www.amazon.com/Advent-Jesse-Tree-Devotions-Christmas-ebook/dp/B009K6DLU6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1417744712&sr=8-1&keywords=the+advent+jesse+tree+dean+lambert
Just as an example, on day 1: "And in failing God, they fell away from closeness with God. They failed and fell and were like a fallen tree. Their family was like a fallen tree. When their family tree crashed to the ground, it crushed all of their hearts. The stump - and all of their days - felt utterly hopeless. Like their hearts had been cut right out of them."
Call me optimistic, but I hope my kids can't identify with utter hopelessness, the feeling of their hearts been cut out of them, or "tears of sadness flood(ing) the world" for many, many years. The idea that little children in loving, Christian homes (or any home, for that matter) would read about "some horrible, awful, miserable, very bad days" and know exactly the feeling the author is talking about is depressing.
An adult woman may appreciate this book (if they like the flowery) but this is NOT A FAMILY DEVOTIONAL.
On the other hand, we did like doing the daily scripture readings, so if you skip over everything Voskamp wrote, read the scripture, look at the pictures, and explain the stories in your own words, the book could provide a good structure to following the Jessie Tree with your family.