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Beginning by recalling Jesus’ baptism in the Jordan River, author Glenys Nellist invites young children to celebrate the sacrament of baptism as “a beautiful, holy, mysterious gift” given by God to his children as a sign that they are part of his great family: “Baptized in the water, / Dove flies from above. / Jesus in the river, / Covered in God’s love. / … Baptized in the water, / A gift for me and you. / A sign that we belong to God, / Who makes us clean and new.”  

Nellist clearly and simply explains that there are different ways people are baptized: sometimes infants are baptized in churches at baptismal fonts; at other times men, women, and children are baptized by immersion in a river, lake, or ocean. Nellist captures the profound meaning and joy of the sacrament: “Baptized in the water, / Like Jesus long ago. / God’s Holy Spirit dances, / As waters gently flow. / … Baptized in the water, / Gathered by the lake. / God hears our songs and prayers, / Each promise that we make.”  

Combining narrative and poetry, Nellist concludes her worshipful, educational children’s picture book with a prayer and Ephesians 4:4-5: “There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called: one Lord, one faith, one baptism.” Illustrator Anna Kazimi’s bright, joyful pictures reinforce the book’s message that God is on the move in the whole human family, drawing the nations to himself, and offering a visible sign of his grace and covenant through the water of baptism. (Zonderkidz)


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