Whew! Two book reviews in a row! I am a busy reader. But this book was SO very worth it. Since it's written for children, it is a super easy read. Not sure how I would read it aloud to a group of kids... I almost cried at every story! Beth's storytelling is so down to earth and the subjects so compelling, I couldn't hardly put this book down. But the material was so deep and heart wrenching for me, that I did have to stop and take a couple breaks.
Orphans, children in poverty, kids who struggle daily with challenges that most of us can't even fathom.... those stories pull so strongly on my heart strings. So what? What can I do about it? What should I do about it? What can our kids learn from it? How can they help? Those are some of the questions I asked and tried to answer as I made my way through each story.
I am planning on sharing this book and the DVD leader's guide with the children/youth pastors at our church. They would be a great addition to their library! But I am also thinking about going through each story with my kids at home. We are so far removed in America from what true poverty looks like. Our children have so many things that they take for granted. I really want to raise kids who have a heart for helping and a passion for missions and sharing God's love wherever they go. I know that just reading from a book won't do it all.... kids have to DO and EXPERIENCE things to fully understand. But they love our devotion time... this would be a perfect supplement.
The stories in this book are written from the perspective of youth in different countries throughout the world. My heart ached as I saw their situations unfold. Yet, among the tapestry of despair and desperation, Beth weaves the incredible, sparkling fibers of God's love and provision. He has not forgotten these children. Neither should we.
I'm also including the summary from Litfuse and Beth's bio (see below).
About the Book:
Follow these real-life stories as they take you on a journey to faraway lands and unknown faces. Travel through their challenges and see the hand of the great Storyweaver writing endings you’d never imagine!
Joel dares to ask for what he can’t have. Seraphina sacrifices what she can’t afford to give. Ibrahim looks for an answer buried out of reach. Christiana, saved by a mission, searches for her own.
These are the tales of the ones the world doesn’t see . . . the tales of the not forgotten.
In this collection of four real-life stories written for preteens, a compelling storyteller paints a picture of God’s dynamic movement in four foreign cultures, inspiring children to trust that God is weaving a story in their lives as well.
This resource will shrink the macro picture down to approachable, individual stories of real children and teach about fundamental survival issues. The stories address some of the challenging questions that kids have and weave God's promises to orphans into each one.
The Tales of the Not Forgotten Leader’s Guide is a 6-session kids' missions resource (sold separately) that walks adults through an easy-to-follow guide for making the abstract real and for designing an action plan to help others.
Preteens will be challenged to answer the questions:
How do I pray? What can I give? Where can I go? Who will I serve?
Beth Guckenberger and her husband, Todd, are the founders of Back2Back Ministries (based in Cincinnati, OH) which communicates a lifestyle of service by sharing the love of Christ and serving God through service to others. Back2Back Ministries connects willing workers to open hearts through international and local ministry opportunities. Their ministry is currently caring and providing for orphan children and needy people in Mexico, Nigeria, India and most recently, Haiti.
Beth travels and speaks regularly at women's and missions conferences, as well as youth gatherings and church services. Her topics include orphan care, missions, parenting, marriage/intimacy, and faith. Her story-telling style captures audiences, and she draws from her field experience as a missionary and parent for illustrations to biblical concepts. In addition to her latest release, Tales of the Not Forgotten (Standard Publishing 2012), Beth has written Relentless Hope (Standard, 2011) and Reckless Faith (Zondervan, 2008).
The Guckenberger family lives and serves in Monterrey, Mexico where they have hosted thousands of guests on their ministry campus. Between biological, foster, and adopted additions to their family, Beth and Todd are raising nine children.
Learn how you can join Beth in ministry at www.bethguckenberger.com or www.back2backministries.org.
**I received the book and DVD for free in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review.**