Reviewed by: Becky Hartlaub
Creation, Big Theology for Little Hearts series, by Devon Provencher, illustrated by Jessica Robyn Provencher. Crossway, 2022. Hardcover, 22 pages, $9.99. Reviewed by Becky Hartlaub, a member at Park Church mission work in Doylestown, PA.
Creation is a delightful way to gently share a familiar retelling of creation while introducing some deeper meaning and theological truths to our covenant children, ages one to five. Devon Provencher’s subtle but poignant wording makes the theological reality and truth of God and creation come across quite clearly, while also being digestible and appealing to such a young audience. Jessica Robyn Provencher’s illustrations are simple and engaging, with fun textures and colors that delight the eye. Some illustrations are symbolic, and others are more literal. Young children will enjoy seeing the animals portrayed in the pages, as well as the familiar depiction of marriage with wedding attire, and even a small baby growing in a womb. There is a more conceptual drawing for bearing God’s image: it simply shows a blank mirror, which should get their minds working as they discern what exactly that means.
Some of the big ideas presented in the book include differences in gender roles, God’s command to be fruitful and multiply, and Adam and Eve’s sin and the fall (complete with serpent and fruit imagery). The gospel provides a happy ending, as the book finishes with a message of hope in what Jesus has done for us, along with the promise of a new heaven and new earth.
I believe this book can answer a lot of “why” questions that our little ones might come up with as they grow, and hopefully it inspires thought and new questions as well. It’s great to have a picture book that reinforces concepts that typically go over their heads. My three-year-old son enjoys this series so much, and I can’t wait to hear his own thoughts someday.
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