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At least once a day, Mom tells you it’s time for your nap.
Maybe you love naptime. Maybe you hate it but when you wake up, you feel better and you’re not grumpy. Sometimes, even grown-ups need naps, you know.
When you’re sleeping, what do you dream about? Do you chase puppies in your dreams, or play with your friends? When God takes a nap, what do you suppose He dreams about?
In the new book “God’s Dream” (c.2008, Candlewick Press, $16.99 / $18.50 Canada, 40 pages) by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Douglas Carlton Abrams (illustrated by LeUyen Pham), you’ll see what kinds of dreams God has when He lays his head on a cloud and daydreams.
When you sleep – or when you just use your imagination – do you think about rainbows and flowers, sandboxes and candy? Are you thinking about doing what you want to do, even though you’re only a kid?
God is no kid, but He has dreams, too. He dreams about people sharing and kids playing with one another, even if their skin or hair or eyes are different colors.
God dreams about the nice things people do for one another and for all His creatures. When you’re kind to someone or something, or when you play nicely with another boy or girl, that’s part of God’s dream.
That doesn’t mean you have to be friends with everybody. There are going to be some kids who will really make you mad. Some kids will be hurtful but when you cry, God cries with you. And forgiveness is part of God’s dream, too.
Even if we look different, pray differently, have different moms and dads, or live on the other side of the Earth, God dreams that we will all be brothers and sisters. You can be older or younger, tall or small, have blue eyes or brown eyes, it doesn’t matter. God wants us to see our sameness, not what sets us apart.
And do you know how to make God’s dream come true?
It’s very, very easy to do.
In this global society, with prejudicial persecution, and racism at the forefront of American minds today, “God’s Dream” is the absolute perfect childhood antidote to hatred and intolerance.
Authors Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Douglas Carlton Abrams lead children in what’s almost an invocation for charitableness and caring, with a quietly introspective (but kid-friendly) look at God’s hopes and dreams for us all. The words are soft and gentle and just right for reading aloud.
Ah, but the pictures!
Illustrator LeUyen Pham matches Tutu’s and Abrams’ words with colorful drawings of children from many lands and skin colors napping, playing, sharing, and yes, even fighting and forgiving. Even the smallest child will be able to follow the story with the illustrations, and I’m betting they’ll want to sit and “read” the book on their own in between story sessions.
If racial intolerance is something you won’t tolerate, give your child that lesson by picking up “God’s Dream”. For kids ages 2-to-7, this book may be an answer to a prayer.