Book Review: The Daily Question For You And Your Child

The Daily Question For You And Your Child:  A 3-Year Spiritual Journey, by Waterbrook

[Note:  This book was given without charge by Multnomah/Waterbrook Press.   All thoughts and opinions are my own.]

This book is a good example of a volume that is more notable for what is supposed to be written in it than for what was written.  One could easily imagine families with several of these books, one for each child in their family, with the answers to the questions being particularly important.  Admittedly, having no children of my own, this volume is not one that is going to be filled, at least not within the foreseeable future, but all the same it was an interesting book to read and imagine as a thought experiment how it will be filled out.  Although I am less than ideal in reading this sort of literature [1], this is not the sort of book that is difficult to understand nor whose appeal is all that problematic to discuss.  Instead, this book is straightforward and easy to understand in its appeal, even for someone who is a singleton with no children such as myself but who loves books.

This volume consists of 365 questions organized in a page-a-day format that is intended to take three years (there are no questions for February 29th, so no leap day question).  Each year is allotted five lines of text, which makes some of the questions difficult to answer–including a request for a story as well as a silly poem, both of which may take longer than the space provided.  The questions themselves are very random as well–it is to be expected that there should be plenty of questions about Christmas in December, and there are, as well as plenty of holiday-themed questions around various holidays, and it is unsurprising that a Christian publisher would post a lot about Jesus (though comparatively little about God the Father and nothing about the Holy Spirit, which seems a matter that kids would not easily understand).  There are also a variety of questions about related topics that appear in various forms over and over again, like questions concerning fears and bravery, or friends, or what kids think about the person asking them questions or growing up in general or dreams and fantasies.  Part of the thrill of the book, one suspects, is that the answers could change very dramatically over the course of three years even if the answers remain the same.

That said, I have somewhat mixed feelings about the questions myself.  Even if I had children, for example, I could not see myself wanting to ask precisely the questions asked, especially given that there is a great deal of attention here paid to pagan festivals and customs, not only Christmas and Easter (as opposed to biblical holy days) but even such matters as New Years’ resolutions.  Likewise, the way that the book has such a skewed perspective of the nature of God in that everything in the book relates to Jesus is more than a little bit off-putting.  This book is likely to be enjoyed and celebrated by many, and a great many of the questions are thoughtful and interesting, and well worth finding the answer of, but the book as a whole and its overall tone and balance is something that I cannot wholeheartedly approve of.  Nevertheless, if one comes from an Evangelical household that holds to no rigorous beliefs about the Sabbath or biblical holy days and has a rather common focus on Jesus Christ, there will be much here for them to appreciate asking their little ones, though.

[1] See, for example:

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
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