Book Review – God Gave Us the World

Little Cub is amazed that there are other bears in the world that very different from her and even more amazed that they all don’t live in the snow! Why is that? “Why not make us all the same?” she asks Mama Bear. Why make polar bears different from panda bears and sloth bears and brown bears? Mama’s Bear simple answer is “God created our world and everything in it, because it’s in his nature to create.” This helps us to worship and praise our God, she says.

Lisa Tawn Bergren, in this new book of the “God Gave Us” series, explores the wonderful diversity seen in God’s creation. The illustrations by Laura J. Bryant are beautifully done, showing the wonder of the little bear’s discoveries at the “Bears Around the World” museum. I can see my own children asking the very questions Little Cub asks about why other bears eat different food or live in different place. This book is great for helping children learn that it’s a GOOD thing that we are all different.

Perhaps the only drawback is the seemingly forced segue into caring for the world God gave us. The book goes from showcasing diversity to caring for the world because “We don’t want to make God mad or sad.” While the message is certainly true that we should take care of the world, the inclusion in the book just felt a little forced.

It helps as you read this book to add some of your own commentary to the narrative since most of the book is dialog between Mama Bear and Little Cub and doesn’t necessarily describe what is going on the pictures. I read it to a group of about 8 toddlers (all ages 2 and 3) and they were able to follow the storyline quite well. Overall, God Gave Us the World is beautifully illustrated and written.

Thanks to WaterBrook Multnomah for providing a review copy of this book. (4/5 stars)

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