My 2 year old son Oliver and I were driving around town delivering Christmas cards the other day. As I pulled out of one driveway, Ollie declared “Wook, Baby Jesus! Mommy wook!” I looked in the neighbor’s lawn and saw wooden cutouts of the Peanuts characters, and another wooden cutout display of the Grinch and assorted members of Whoville. But no Baby Jesus.
I couldn’t help but smiling that at such an early age, Ollie is looking for baby Jesus, even if he doesn’t always quite find him. It reminded me how powerful the Story of Jesus is, how it resonates in our hearts and can be grasped by even our youngest disciples, despite the noise and the din of the holiday season.
Here’s a sampling of Christmas books where we as families can look for the Baby Jesus and most definitely find him.
Christmas Picture Books
The First Christmas by Pamela Dalton
I just discovered this one. This book’s illustrations are all colored papercuttings, set against black backdrops. The text is the Christmas story from the King James Version
*Through the Animals’ Eyes: A Story of the First Christmas by Christopher Wormell.
This woodblock artist retelling of Jesus’ birth and early life. Simple, elegant text, with pictures that include animals of Biblical Times.
*Song of the Stars: A Christmas Story by Sally Lloyd Jones.
A wonderful version told from the perspective of creation getting ready for the Christ Child. By the author of Jesus Storybook bible.
*Silent Night by Susan Jeffers.
Just the words of the song tell the story with beautiful illustrations.
*The Glorious Impossible by Madeleine L’Engle,
This book is by one of my favorite authors of all time (she wrote A Wrinkle in Time). It is illustrated with frescoes from the Scrovegni Chapel by the renaissance master Giotto. Text suitable for elementary aged kids and above.
*The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski
Touching story of a wood carver creating a nativity scene and his act of love for a single mother and son.
*The All-I’ll-Ever-Want Christmas Doll by Patricia McKissack and Jerry Pickney
Nella and her sisters don’t have much but always get something on Christmas day. This Christmas she yearns for Baby Betty doll. Instead she gets more then she dreamed realizing Christmas isn’t just about gifts.
*The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry.
The classic story of the imporverished couple who gave everything for love of the other. A true depiction of Christ’s love for us, with etheral illustrations.
*Birds of Bethlehem by Tomie DePaola
The story of Jesus’ birth, told from the perspective of the birds.http://www.amazon.com/Birds-Bethlehem-Tomie-dePaola/dp/0399257802/?tag=thegospcoal-20