What can you do to give children a sense of their Christian heritage and the awesome power of God? You could hold family devotions using Amazing Stories from Times Past by Christine Farenhorst. These short accounts draw on everything from the insignificant acorn to Queen Elizabeth, to teach biblical principles for a month's worth of devotions.
Each story covers three to five pages. Artist Steven Mitchell has illustrated several of the stories with black and white line drawings. Bible verses clarify the principle taught, and each story ends with a couple of thought-provoking questions.
Farenhorst provides a variety of story subjects and principles. Two stories tell of Pastor Haralan Popov's ministry in Communist Bulgaria, and trains on the principles of joy in trials and the furtherance of the gospel. The story of Paul "Bog" teaches of the foolishness of hoarding. "The Heaven Book" shows the marvelous intervention of God in delivering a Christian who had hidden smuggled Bibles in China. "The Marseillaise" shows the dangers of bitterness.
The stories would make good personal devotions for junior high students, but I believe students as young as fourth grade could benefit if read and discussed during family devotions. The questions challenge the reader to think, and make good conversation starters. A few of the questions reflect Farenhorst's reformed theology, but most of the reading and questions would appeal to a broad Christian audience.
I hope to use the book during homeschooling in a few years, but it would also be good for family devotions, private devotions, and perhaps Christian school or camp devotions. – Debbie W. Wilson, Christian Book Previews.com
The lives of both Christians and unbelievers of the past teach us through their examples. In this second volume especially prepared for family and children's devotions, Christine Farenhorst once again captivates readers with her remarkable and unusual stories from history. Each devotion includes insightful questions and will encourage readers to talk about what God has done in their own lives and in the lives of Christians from years gone by.