If your family is looking for a devotional that your elementary-aged kids can actually relate to, Exploring Grace Together is that devotional. In this little book, author Jessica Thompson takes us through many different common childhood attitudes and thoughts and applies Scripture to each situation. Exploring Grace Together takes examples of children who are thinking wrong thoughts and shows us how the Bible corrects those wrong thoughts and attitudes.
Here are some examples:
Lilly always wants to be the center of attention and achieves that goal by being funny. But inwardly, Lilly feels very sad and unloved. Psalm 63:3 reminds kids who might be experiencing these feelings that God’s love is the most important love that we can ever have and that we don’t have to “be funny”, “be perfect”, or work at retaining God’s love.
Marcus is very lonely and feels like he has no friends at school. John 15:13 reminds us that we already have a perfect friend in Jesus.
MaryAnn feels rejected when her best friend Wanda starts hanging out with her new neighbor. MaryAnn’s need for friendship with Wanda has become an idol in her life. MaryAnn needs to remember that because of God’s love we can love others without worrying about whether or not we are their “favorites” and will be loved back.
Quincy needs to forgive Carson for a repeated offense. Quincy needs to be reminded of God’s forgiveness, as seen in Colossians 3:13, to help encourage him to extend forgiveness to Carson.
There are 40 lessons in this devotional book. Each lesson can be read in about five minutes and has three to four application questions at the end to help drive home the Scriptural truths. Each lesson in this book encourages us to revel in God’s grace in our lives. We are never so bad that God cannot save us! And, we can never be so good that we can earn God’s favor!
Exploring Grace Together could also be used as a parent resource for when kids are going through different tough situations (dealing with bullies, moving, friendships breaking apart, etc). My elementary-aged children really seemed to enjoy this devotional and were engaged with it. Kids who are in kindergarten and younger will probably not be able to empathize with the stories and the characters.