Comfort in the Darkness by Rachel Turner
A very useful aid for helping parents draw their children closer to God, and a must for the bedroom bookshelf
Comfort in the Darkness
By Rachel Turner
Bible Reading Fellowship (BRF)
ISBN: 978 0 85746 4231
Reviewer Martin M’Caw
Every Saturday our six and seven year old granddaughters have a sleepover with us because they love to come to church on Sunday mornings. They like to sleep with the bedside light on low but neither of them have nocturnal problems.
They are a vivacious pair. The trouble with bedtime is switching off Peppa Pig, or getting them off their tab, and calming them down. When they are finally between the sheets, reading a bedtime story is a great relaxer.
These 16 Bible stories are all simply written in a manner that allows the reader to add timely pauses and thoughtful expression. They are all set in a night time context through which God’s presence and purpose are revealed whether life is easy, perplexing or fraught with trouble and danger.
In order to get the most out of the stories the ‘Extras for Parents’ should be read well before involving the children. A good friend of mine describes it as finding and providing emotional intelligence.
However this is neither a D.I.Y. Sunday School manual nor a lesson book. The Discussion Points are useful if it’s appropriate to prolong bedtime a little, but should not be imposed if the conversation is going to erase sleepiness.
The prayers that come after each story, sensitively link the thoughts and feelings from the characters with how the children may have reacted and brings them into the love and care of the Lord. Their aim is to develop a sense of prayerfulness in the closeness of God as they snuggle down. It’s a far cry from the old kneel by your bed and say your prayers routine. That may have been fine for God to bless mummy and daddy, the cat the dog and the goldfish, tell me about it, but it did hardly anything to develop prayerfulness.
The Frequently Asked Questions found at the end of the book are required reading prior to the book being used. They can be very useful in helping parents settle children’s anxieties, understand the world around them and how best to relate to it.
Comfort in the Darkness is a very useful aid for helping parents draw their children closer to God and a must for the bedroom bookshelf.
The Revd Dr Martin M’Caw is a retired Baptist minister