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God Made Me and You: Celebrating God’s Design for Ethnic Diversity is a book to give to your kids to show them how God not only enjoys different races and backgrounds, but he designed it to be that way because he enjoys that.
The book begins with a reference to Revelation 7:9-10, where the Apostle John sees the multitude of people from every tribe, tongue, and nation standing before the throne and the Lamb and praising them. The next page displays Shai Linne’s explanation to every parent/caregiver on why he wrote this book: he is “convinced from Scripture that ethnic diversity is not something that should be begrudgingly tolerated but rather enthusiastically celebrated! Passages like Revelation 7:9-10 speak very loudly to God’s ultimate purpose in the gospel—a redeemed, ethnically diverse people worshiping God for all eternity.”
God’s glory shines “like the facets of a jewel” through our different ethnicities, but sin warps that and gives us “racism, bigotry, and ethnic pride.” Christ died for the nations. Plural. He died for all peoples—that is, people groups.
Flipping the page, the story begins at a school with a few boys picking on any kid who didn’t look like them. The teacher comes in, corrects them, points them to Acts 17, and goes back to creation and God’s intentions there. There are both differences in the world’s geography and topography and in humanity’s skin tones. But of course, sin came and sucked the life out of everything. But later God sent his Son to give us life, forgiveness, and reconciliation. The church is filled with people of all sorts. Shai Linne, a popular Christian rapper, writes, “God turns strangers into sisters and brothers, Though different, we’re called to love one another.”
The book ends with “Six Ways to Help Your Child Appreciate God’s Design for Ethnic Diversity,” which includes teaching them what the bible says, correcting commonly held errors, be educated about other cultures and make relationships with those of different ethnicities, watch your words, and look forward to the future where the Spirit will continue to do his work.
The story is written in both ABCB and ABAB rhyming schemes.
Trish Mahoney did great with this book. There are different settings in the book: a school, outer space, a forest with icebergs in the background, the garden of Eden, the front of a church, and more. The range of ethnic children seem to be represented well. There are black, white, and asian children, along with children having different hair colors and styles. Some have freckles, birthmarks, glasses, and crutches. Compared to the previous books I’ve reviewed, the illustrations here are, in a way, simpler. They’re still very colorful and will be pleasing to any child.
Racism and ethnic pride have always been a problem (even back to Exodus 1:8-10 and Numbers 12:1). Children can often be cruel toward others kids who are different. Shai Linne’s book is good to read to your child when they meet children of a different ethnicity, when they hear others teasing those children, or even for those times when they themselves are the mockers (or the mocked). This book gives an important message that we are all different from each other. God made each and every one of us to look just as we are, and he did so for his glory. Highly recommended.
- Author: Shai Linne (@ShaiLinne)
- Illustrator: Trish Mahoney
- Hardcover: 32 pages
- Age Range: 8 – 12 years
- Publisher: New Growth Press; 1 edition (September 18, 2018)
- Read a sample
Find it on Amazon and New Growth Press!
Disclosure: I received this book free from New Growth Press. The opinions I have expressed are my own, and I was not required to write a positive review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html.