I was so excited when Zondervan offered their Homeschool Mom's Bible, NIV for review and I was chosen to review it. I was interested to see how they combined homeschooling, being a mom, and God's Word...three of my favorite things. We received the hardcover Bible, which retails for $34.99.
It has a beautiful, inviting cover and dust jacket. I'm sure it is just one of my many quirks but dust jackets scare me. I was worried that the Bible itself would have a plain cover and when the dust jacket got torn up (because it would because I have children) it would be ugly. I was so happy that it was the exact same cover under the dust jacket - yay. Still beautiful! Love it!
OK, now that we have established that the Bible is pretty, let's see what is in it.
The Homeschool Mom's Bible has 365 devotions mixed in with the entire Word of God. Each devotion is labeled with a date, so you can start anywhere. I opened up to the current date, August 28th and the devotion was about "Fresh Starts" - fitting, huh? I love how God places the right things in your path and the right time.
For the Homeschool Mom's Bible, Zondervan teamed up with Alpha Omega Publishing, a leader in the homeschool community. Janet Tatum joined up with Alpha Omega Publishing after homeschooling her 4 children for 25 years (wow!). Mrs. Tatum is the author of the devotions throughout this Bible. The devotions are both encouraging and applicable to our daily life.
The topics of the devotions are perfect for homeschool moms - I loved Sept. 28 that was titled "The Great Pretender" about Hebrews 4:13, which says, "Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account." Mrs. Tatum tied this into homeschooling by explaining how if we pretend to know all the answers, our kids will see right through us. It's ok to say you don't know (or "let's 'google' that" in my case). And God knows when we are pretending too. Nothing can be hidden from Him. She reminds us that God knows our hearts! Each devotion ends in a prayer, then tells what page to find the next devotion on.
I have enjoyed the devotions a lot. They are short, but powerful. A great addition to your daily time with the Lord. I do wish the devotions were placed near the actual verse they reverenced. That August 28 one I posted above was located in Isaiah, even though the scripture referenced was in 2 Corinthians. However, I do like how they flow with the year, which I'm sure is how they decided which day to match them up with. "A fresh start" was just about the beginning of the school year, Sept. 11 was on "Tragic Memories" with a poem about 9/11 and others were seasonal too, so I guess you can't have everything - lol.
There is a great topical index in the back so you can find devotions on specific topics easily. It would be handy if they added a list that said what page each date's devotion was found on too to minimize the flipping.
There are also some footnotes/cross references on the bottom of the pages. This isn't a study Bible (I have one of those that I use for my normal daily devotions) but it is nice to have this extra info on there for when I was looking up the verses discussed in the devotions and reading the passages around them.
All in all, I really enjoyed this Bible. The devotions were easy to read and relate to my life. They take only a few minutes and can be added in easily any time you have 5 minutes for a boost of the Word and encouragement during the day. I often found myself reading other devotions later in the day after I had already read the one for that day.
|I even took it on our trip to Branson and enjoyed His Word on the patio while the kids slept.|
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