Verdict: LORD JESUS, I WANT TO SEE... is a sweet, thoughtful devotional for children that is age-appropriate without being condescending, and seeks to foster a kind and compassionate morality.
LORD JESUS, I WANT TO SEE… is aimed at fostering a regular sense of Christian religious practice for elementary-aged children, with four weekly Scripture readings, lessons, and prayers designated for each month, and a set of “fifth-week” devotionals in the back for months containing five weeks. Each reading and lesson is geared to teaching a particular moral value, whether that be kindness to others, generosity, refraining from anger or bullying, or respect for elders and those in authority.
The Bible used for Scripture quotes is the New American Bible (and in plcaes the New International Version), which has relatively clear and straightforward language while maintaining a certain prosaic elegance. The lessons taught are likewise taught in plain and simple words, relatively accessible to children of elementary-school age, and the prayers are reasonably short and not too difficult to memorize. The moral content of the lessons and the prayers generally leans towards encouragement of kindness, generosity, patience and forgiveness rather than self-righteousness, which is a welcome trend, and the actions children are urged to take as a result of their learning and prayer are generally those that most people, of any religion, would encourage in an effort to make the world a better place. There are a couple of moments where that teaching becomes a bit discordant.
The author has a tendency to be rather pessimistic about “the world” and modern times, and to argue that people today, particularly non-Christians, are more likely to be selfish, cruel, and lacking in compassion – this “us-against-them” mentality, and the prejudices it fosters, are not entirely supportive of the author’s desire to foster loving kindness in children. There is also a point, in discussion of Noah’s Flood, where the author discusses God’s anger leading to the Flood – and then immediately segues into a discussion of anger as a fault and something to be controlled lest it lead to destructive behavior. This may imply to children that God Himself was being sinful and wrong in His anger, which is most likely not the Reverend’s intention. (He also suggests that Jesus controlled his anger and sought peaceful solutions – though the money-changers in the Temple might disagree.)
LORD JESUS, I WANT TO SEE… is a sweet, thoughtful devotional for children that is age-appropriate without being condescending, and seeks to foster a kind and compassionate morality.
~Catherine Langrehr for IndieReader