Bethany Hamilton’s spirit blazes through the pages of Rise Above: A 90-Day Devotional. This book is geared toward girls ages eight to twelve, and it addresses all areas of preteen life. Hamilton writes about sensitive issues, from wearing modest clothing to having a positive self-image, and she focuses on Christian ethics such as honesty, pride, and appropriate praise. The best part? She does it genuinely with a fresh, young, surfer-girl voice.
Some devotional books start strong but gradually become repetitive and clichéd. Not Rise Above. This devotional collection gains strength as it goes on. In Devotion #1, Bethany describes the morning when she lost her arm in a shark attack and relates the incident to an obvious biblical truth that God has “Big Plans Ahead” for all His children. In Devotion #39, “Getting an A for Attitude,” Bethany reminds her readers that she is just as human as they are and that she, too, argues with her parents, cries, and gets grumpy. This transparency gives her credibility when she writes “no matter what we’re feeling inside, Jesus calls us to be selfless.” The connected Bible verse is a perfect fit. It’s Ephesians 4:23-24, which says, “There must be a spiritual renewal of your thoughts and attitudes. You must display a new nature because you are a new person, created in God’s likeness—righteous, holy, and true.”
Each devotional can be read in about three minutes, but in that short time the reader will get a story clip from Bethany’s life, a related Bible verse and prayer, and a fun fact about Bethany. The arrangement is simple and the truths she writes about are nothing new, but her youthful voice is sure to speak to preteen girls who desire to seek God’s will in their lives. If you’re looking for a devotional that will keep your daughter’s attention and give her solid thoughts to process on a daily basis, this is the book. I know because it reached me, a routine, silly, God-loving college girl. – Rachel Tobin, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
Young girls will get encouraging words from the Bible and from courageous, young surfer Bethany Hamilton to see them through their day in this devotional book. Both “hot” and “cool” topics that every young girl faces will be addressed. An extra, tucked-in feature will give the girls the “inside scoop” on what Bethany’s life is all about.