Comforting Hearts, Teaching Minds: Family Devotions Based on the Heidelberg Catechism by Starr Meade is exactly what it sounds like – a devotional for families. It is arranged one week at a time. On Sunday you read one or more questions and answers from the Heidelberg Catechism, then every other day of the week there is a short devotional that ties into the questions from Sunday. Each day’s reading (except Sunday) also includes Bible verses for reference. There are 52 weeks of devotionals in the book.
We haven’t actually finished this book yet. We are reading it at the dinner table, and, as I noted above, it could be a year or more before we actually get through the whole thing. I wanted to write a review, though, so others could hear about this wonderful book.
The book is written at a low enough level that I think it could easily be used by families with very young children (older toddlers to young elementary), but it is also written in such a way that it doesn’t “talk down” to adults or older children. My children are a bit older (older elementary to middle school age), and the book works for them. They understand it but don’t feel like it is a “baby” book.
Here’s how we are using it: every night at dinner, either my husband or I read the night’s devotional with all the Bible verses (I keep the book with my Bible, as the verses are listed in the book but not written out). Then, we ask the children if they have any questions or comments related to what we read. We have had some really good discussion about theology and Bible interpretation.
I highly recommend this book to all Christian parents. While we can incorporate Bible reading into family like without using a book other than the Bible, it is so much easier to do so with a guide, and Comforting Hearts, Teaching Minds is an excellent guide.