Wednesday, September 8, 2010

100 Prayers God Loves to Hear 100 Praise Songs by Stephen Elkins

Title: 100 Prayers God Loves to Hear 100 Praise Songs
Author: Stephen Elkins
Rating: Good for you if…you need ideas or want to introduce prayer
Reason for Reading: I got this book as a part of the BookSneeze Program. As always, my opinion is completely my own and not affected by getting the book free. For more details, check out our Full Disclosure statement.
Summary: 100 Prayers is a book of prayers for children. The prayers vary from traditional prayers that most of us prayed as a child, to prayers written and prayed by famous people, to original prayers written by the author. Each prayer is accompanied by text that explains the prayer, a prayer thought, and a song on one of the two CDs.
Review: I have mixed feelings about this set. The things I like about it are that the prayers and readings are short enough to be morning or evening devotions/prayer time with small children. I like the accompanying sound tracks that are full of classic songs as well as original compositions. I like the colorful and vibrant art work.
There are things I don't really like about the book. For instance, each prayer is accompanied by a "My Little Prayer Reminder". However, these quotes and thoughts are too deep for small children to comprehend. Some of them were too intellectual for me to comprehend! I'm also confused as to who the target audience is for the book. The illustrations look to be geared toward small children (my 9 year old claimed they were "babyish"), but many of the prayers are geared toward school-age children.  This is just a personal pet peeve, but there are words highlighted in different colors…the words aren't special or important words, they're just words (sometimes the word "the" is a different color than the other words on the line).  I feel that the different colors would have added to the overall feel of the book if they highlighted important words or the theme of the prayer, instead of random words.
Each prayer has a song referenced at the top of the page. At first, I liked that. I thought it would be cute to hear all these prayers geared toward children being sung by children. However, that's not the case. Some of the songs are the prayers put to music (though not word-for-word), some of the songs are on the same theme as the prayer (America the Beautiful is paired with a prayer written by Abraham Lincoln), but some of the songs I don't understand why they were chosen to go with the prayer.
Final Thoughts: I think this is a great resource for parents who want to introduce the idea of prayer to young children. I don't know that I would read all of the words on the page to the child as some of the concepts will be very hard, if not impossible, to explain to small children. We might use it as a resource for our older child to lead devotions for the family, but I can't see this becoming a classic in our home.


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