Gibson, Jonathan. The Moon Is Always Round. New Growth Press, Greensboro, NC. 2019. 32 pages.
I recently lost my last living grandparent. Since I teach my niece each week a Bible lesson at my home, I thought the news of his death would be a fitting time to talk to her about suffering and the character of God. However, as I began to prepare, I pondered: How do you teach a four-year-old about God’s goodness in the midst of suffering and death? I found the answer in Jonathan Gibson’s The Moon Is Always Round.
A Story from a Child’s Perspective
Written with the profoundness of a seminary professor and with the heart of a father, Gibson uses an analogy of the moon to teach children on the character of God. With wonderfully-done illustrations by Joe Hox, the story is written from the perspective of a young boy who looks at the sky and sometimes the moon appears round and other nights it does not. His dad reminds him whether the moon appears that way or not, the truth is “The moon is always round.” When the boy’s family celebrates with an expected baby sister on the way, the moon is round. When the parents grieve the death of their stillborn child, the father reminds the boy “The moon is always round”. At the funeral, the father speaks to family and friends and says, “The moon is always round.” Looking to his son, he asks, “What does that mean?” The young boy answers, “God is always good.”
A Book Built on Biblical Truth
This story is more than just a lesson. It is a story born out of the author’s own loss of a stillborn child, Leila Judith Grace, at 39 weeks. There is a page at the back of the book, “The Story Behind This Book”, which shares the true story in greater detail. The closing pages as well contain ideas for using the book as a springboard to teach lessons for children, including a segment for learning about Good Friday. The very last page of the book features a catechism on the moon leading to the goodness of God.
A Nightly Reminder of God’s Goodness in Suffering
The Moon Is Always Round by Jonathan Gibson is a book built on biblical truth and thoughtfully delivered to reach young children with the reminder that just as the moon is always round even when it may not appear so, God is always good, even when suffering and bad times may make that hard to see. If you are a parent who is dealing with loss, whether that be a miscarriage or the loss of an elderly family member, and are struggling with how to explain to your 3-to-6-year-old suffering and death in relation to the character of God, then you need The Moon Is Always Round. Teach kids of the goodness of God in the midst of bad times. This book will serve as a nightly reminder to young children of the goodness of God even in times of sadness and suffering.
I received this book from New Growth Press in exchange for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own and are my honest review of the book.