I love Christmas and all the hustle and bustle surrounding it.
But I also love taking a few minutes every day to be quiet and reflect on the real reason for the season.
We want to teach our children to do the same, so we have implemented some advent activities into our December schedule.
This year we have rediscovered a classic Advent book that has brought a new meaning to the Christmas season.
Jotham’s Journey: A Storybook for Advent was written by Arnold Ytreeide and originally published in 1997. A second edition was published this year making it easier for another generation of children to enjoy.
The story takes place in Israel at the time of Christ’s birth. Jotham is a ten year old boy who runs away from home in anger. Then, hungry, lost, and repentant, he begins to search for his family.
This adventure takes him across Israel where he meets thieves, kidnappers, and robbers as well as wise men, shepherds and innkeepers.
The story is divided into short chapters to be read each day of advent. The last chapter is read on Christmas Day. I won’t give away the ending…but I’ll give you a clue…he ends up in Bethlehem in a stable!
The book is both humorous and exciting. It has kept all of my children attentive- from my seven year old to the teenagers.
One word of caution, there are some scary parts. They are always resolved, but many times the resolution is left for the next days reading. This makes a very exciting read-aloud, but it could be a little scary for younger readers.
There are two other books in this trilogy by Arnold Ytreeide, Tabitha’s Travels and Bartholomew’s Passage. But both are currently out of print and hard to find.
This is one family that hopes they too will get a second edition! Please Mr. Ytreeide!