Between caring for and schooling my children, planning for our days together, caring for my home, and participating in church fellowship, there isn’t much time left to choose what I want to read and listen to. Here are resources and devotionals over the past 8 years of motherhood that have been especially encouraging to me. I hope they are to you as well as you fulfill God’s call for your life.
David Suchet Audio Bible
David Suchet has recorded the entire Bible in his rich voice, and it is all available in playlists on YouTube. For example, just search “David Suchet Ecclesiastes” and you’ll find the playlist you’re looking for. This has been an excellent resource as I do my stretches in the morning and has been helpful to re-listen to books of the Bible multiple times in a row to get a better understanding of the themes and principles.
Their goal: To help people experience the Bible as a unified story that leads to Jesus.
I can’t recommend these short videos enough. There are videos giving the historical background, themes, and outline of each book of the Bible along with illustrations, and also videos about themes throughout Scripture. Just watch one. You’ll be hooked.
Devotionals and Prayer Guides:
“Forget “behavior modification” or feel-good aphorisms. Tripp knows that what we really need is an encounter with the living God. Then we’ll be prepared to trust in God’s goodness, rely on his grace, and live for his glory each and every day.”
This has been another way to celebrate God in my thoughts as I start the day.
This is a collection of puritan prayers and devotions. Don’t let the cover turn you off. It is filled with scripturally and theologically rich prayers to worship and enjoy God. It’s often been a great starting place to help me worship God and then talk to Him about what’s on my mind and heart.
“This book has been prepared not to ‘supply’ prayers but to prompt and encourage the Christian as he treads the path on which others have gone before.”
You can read the prayers for free here, but I’m grateful for my hardcopy to highlight and meditate on.
“EVERY MOMENT HOLY is a book of liturgies for the ordinary events of daily life–liturgies such as “A Liturgy for Feasting with Friends” or “A Liturgy for Laundering” or “A Liturgy for the First Hearthfire of the Season.” These are ways of reminding us that our lives are shot through with sacred purpose even when, especially when, we are too busy or too caught up in our busyness to notice.”
This is such a beautiful guide for learning how to see every part of our lives as a way to meet the Lord. (And McKelvey’s words are so well-chosen and biblical.)
Delighting in the Trinity by Michael Reeves
“Why is God love? Because God is a Trinity.
Why can we be saved? Because God is a Trinity.
How are we able to live the Christian life? Through the Trinity.
In this lively book, we find an introduction to Christianity and the Christian life that is from start to finish rooted in our triune God―Father, Son and Spirit. Not only do we understand the person and work of Christ through the Trinity, but also prayer, the church and every aspect of our faith.”
Just imagine if we could begin each day (or wake up each night) remembering and delighting in our loving Father, salvation-giving Jesus, and empowering Spirit?
If you don’t have time to read the book, check out these audio talks and short videos related to the same topic.
A powerful sermon by Michael Reeves on the resurrection of Christ
Women’s Conference Audio talks:
I’ve especially appreciated listening to these sessions and breakout sessions as it’s been harder for me to get away for an actual women’s conference.
The Women of Hope Conference is one I’ve been appreciating, coming right out of a church in Maryland.
This network of churches “encourages and educates believers advocating gospel-centered principles and practices that glorify the Savior and do good to those for whom he shed his life’s blood.”
I have been especially blessed listening to the audio sermons and workshops from the women’s conferences they organize each year.
This 10 minute video brought tears to my eyes as the names of God through the entire Bible are proclaimed.
Full of Eyes (youtube channel)
Chris Powers’ hope is to “fill this channel with videos that exalt Jesus Christ as the Joy, King, and Savior of the world. He is the One in whom we see and know God, and so I want all eyes fixed on Him. I’d love it if the Lord would use these videos to point you to Christ, and to empower you to point others to Him as well.”
These are beautifully illustrated animations that have helped me to remember my lostness without Christ, and many aspects of the gospel.
Here are a few resources geared toward children ages 5-12. Some we have enjoyed as a family already, and others I look forward to using even more as the kids get older. These might be some great Christmas gift ideas for the young ones in your life. Or you could forward this list to their parents and let them choose. (hint hint 🙂 )
“The bestselling NIrV Study Bible for Kids starts early readers ages 6 to 10 on the rewarding path of reading and studying God’s Word. This Bible uses the complete text of the New International Reader’s Version® (NIrV) which is written at a third-grade reading level and is perfect for those learning to read. With colorful artwork, easy-to-read Bible text, and fun features, kids will engage with the Bible in a way that makes it stick.”
I love this version! It’s helped me stay focused as I read in mom-fog sometimes, and is great to share stories straight from Scripture with my kids.
“The New City Catechism is a modern-day resource aimed at helping children and adults alike learn the core doctrines of the Christian faith via 52 questions and answers.”
There is a print version of the questions available on their website, and also a free app with the questions and answers and even a few songs that go along with the questions. Each answer also has a shortened version highlighted for young children to memorize. Reading through it with my 4 year old has sparked some interesting conversations as we’ve tried to memorize it together.
“101 simple-yet- profound thoughts on faith. Thoughts to Make Your Heart Sing shares profound spiritual truths from the Bible told in a conversational tone—drawing insights from creation, history, science, the writings of great thinkers and preachers and writers, and more—to turn the reader’s eyes toward the God who loves them with a Never Stopping, Never Giving Up, Unbreaking, Always and Forever Love.”
“The Bible is full of exciting stories that fill children with awe and wonder. But kids need to know how all those classic stories connect to Scripture’s overarching message about God’s glorious plan to redeem his rebellious people.
In The Biggest Story, Kevin DeYoung—a best-selling author and father of six—leads kids and parents alike on an exciting journey through the Bible, connecting the dots from the garden of Eden to Christ’s death on the cross to the new heaven and new earth.” Ages 5-8 (read to me) Ages 8-11 (read to myself)
“Can a Bedtime Story Actually Change Your Life? It is easy to forget Jesus in the midst of frantic schedules, family squabbles, and conflicting priorities. But the truth is that he is the hero of every story, including these ordinary ones. This is why Marty Machowski puts God’s plan of salvation in Christ on continuous display in The Gospel Story Bible. (And includes child-friendly questions for discussion.) “Ideal as a storybook for your preschooler, a devotional for your grade school student, a refresher for the adult believer, or an introduction for the new one, The Gospel Story Bible is also a companion to Long Story Short: Ten-Minute Devotions to Draw Your Family to God.”
“Many parents struggle to teach their children systematic theology, or even lead family devotions. The Ology will help you do both. Marty has made another significant contribution to biblically faithful, gospel-centered, creatively designed, accessible materials that help parents raise their kids not merely to know about God, but to have a relationship with him through Jesus Christ.”
Bob Kauflin, Director of Sovereign Grace Music
“Few tasks are of greater importance than the discipling of children. Christian parents and Sunday school teachers, committed to biblical fidelity, cannot neglect the tremendous task of teaching children the great truths of Scripture. Marty Machowski’s The Ology: Ancient Truths Ever New is a wonderful new book that will equip parents for the task of discipleship and also help children immerse themselves in the Christian worldview.”
R. Albert Mohler, Jr., President of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Not sure how to pray for the needs of the world? This is an incredible resource of 4-5 minute videos (from hundreds of places around the world), leading you in how to pray for them.
And if you’re not done scrolling, you can check out my full resource page here.
I wanted to send along some of our favorite books and music that I enjoyed with my son in his preschool years and now am enjoying with my daughters. If you don’t have a preschooler, maybe you know someone who would be blessed if you sent an Amazon package their way. . .
Jesus Storybook Bible (Ages 4 and up)
Who is the true knight in shining armor in the stories in the Bible? Jesus!
Subtitled, “Every Story Whispers His Name,” the Bible stories show Jesus at the center of God’s redemption story and their story, too.
Plus, the pictures are beautiful, and there is even a Sunday School curriculum available.
“Stories from the Old and New Testaments are told in chronological order, helping readers journey through a complete narrative of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. Egermeier’s® Bible Story Book includes: 312 biblically accurate stories from the Old and New Testaments written in an engaging, easy-to-understand style with 122 vibrant, full-color illustrations.”
This is a great transition between using Bible storybooks geared towards preschool children and reading the stories straight from Scripture.
So many Bible story songs focus on the “heroes” of the Bible. These upbeat, folksy cds focus on God as the true Hero.
When Isaiah was a newborn, I found myself listening to these even when he was asleep.
The first cd uses the words to the Baby’s Hug-a-Bible as the lyrics.
Christopher and I used these gospel-centered songs with our Sunday School kids.
Some of the songs have kids’ voices, and they are fun listening and easy singing.
Using Scripture as the lyrics, these lullaby cds have brought such calmness to my soul in times of stress.
I listened to them quite a bit in the last 2 weeks before Isaiah was born.
There are also some gorgeous instrumental songs mixed in.
Beautiful arrangements, and there is also an instrumental version of this CD.
I love all of Ellie Holcomb’s albums, but this one geared towards kids has been greatly enjoyed by all of us.
Songs for Saplings (Free)
“Our mission is to equip the Church worldwide with rich, Biblical music to help children learn their faith through song.” I can’t get these little songs out of my head, and am so excited for my children to grow up hearing (and memorizing) these Bible verses set to music. She also has a series of albums teaching the Catechism for Young People through song.
Thank you so much to those of you who prayed for me to recover from Covid back in April. Though the brain fog and fatigue hung on for months, the Lord has graciously restored my health.
I’ve enjoyed doing this podcast so much the past 3 years, working with my son Isaiah (Finn) and getting to study and meditate on these stories from the Bible.
As I look to the future, God has shown me that I need to focus my time on homeschooling two of my children this year and continue to be involved as a family at church, so I’ve had to make some difficult and painful decisions.
For now, you won’t see new podcast episodes, but you will see activity on my website aliciayoder.com. I will plan to keep my recommended resource page updated, with suggestions for children, parents, and materials for discipleship and spiritual growth. You will also see certain podcast episodes or series highlighted, especially around holidays. So if you’re only subscribed to the podcast, be sure you subscribe to my site here: aliciayoder.com.
There will still be some costs to host my website and to host the audio for past episodes so that they can be accessed through Spotify and iTunes, so if you’d like to support this work for a couple dollars a month, you can do so at https://www.patreon.com/aliciayoder
Lastly, thank you so much for being a parent or someone involved in working with children. It can feel exhausting, thankless, and discouraging when we aren’t able to see much fruit, but God sees and gives us grace in our efforts. We have so much hope because of Christ, who took the punishment for all our sins, credited us with His righteousness, and leads us moment by moment to God’s throne of grace and mercy. We are loving who Jesus loves as we compassionately and humbly train our children. So let’s keep going in Christ’s strength as we come to Him in each desperate need!
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
Dear precious readers and listeners,
After coming down with Covid a few weeks ago, the Lord has chosen not to restore my strength and health yet. It has made me sad to take a break from writing and recording the podcasts, but I am hopeful He will allow me to continue when I am restored. His grace sustains and His purposes are good.
In this episode, we see how gracious, loving, tender, and kind God is toward those who repent and that we need God’s help to have that attitude toward others.
With your kids: Talk about what you could say to encourage your brother or sister this week when they choose what’s right.
This is a series I put together a couple years ago, so I wanted to share it again in case you missed it.
We zoom through the Bible, paying attention to God’s plan of redemption, and all the times He keeps pursuing the people He created. (Plus, there are some cool drawings for your kids to check out!)
You can check out the series on Spotify, iTunes, or Google podcasts or listen here:
In this episode, Finn and I talk about a shepherd prophet and how the message is the same for us. Seek the Lord and live!
With your kids: Ask your children how they would explain the holiday of Easter to a kid from another country who thought it was just about bunnies and candy.
And in case you missed it, Isaiah and I put together a behind the scenes video (Part 1 and 2) for the boys and girls who listen to the Jesus is Better Podcast.