Good News for Little Hearts series provides hope for struggles children face
New Growth Press Series Bringing Gospel Help and Biblical Counsel to Families
Everyone has something they struggle with from time to time, even young kids. Certain situations and circumstances can lead to big feelings that are hard to handle, but it’s never too early to learn how to turn to Jesus when things get hard. The Good News for Little Hearts series helps children apply biblical truth to whatever situations they face. This fall, the popular series is growing with three new releases helping children deal with stress, jealousy, and fitting in.
Each of the stories in this series of hardback, full-color books (written for children three to eight years old) focuses on an animal family facing real-life issues. By overcoming each struggle or hardship, the characters model hope in Jesus. Through the animal characters, colorful illustrations by Joe Hox, and situations children can identify with, young readers will be captivated throughout the stories, paving the way for Christ-centered conversations on important topics. Published in partnership with the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF), the Good News for Little Hearts series aims to provide grace-based and biblical counsel to families.
- Buster Tries to Bail: When You Are Stressed, edited by David and Nan Powlison, tells a new tale about Buster Bunny. Buster loves racing, but the more he thinks about the upcoming competition at the county fair for who will be the fastest animal in Mulberry Meadow, the more stressed he gets. No matter how hard he trains, he can’t eat or sleep, and eventually he decides he wants to quit running altogether. Buster’s parents talk with him about quieting the noise in his head so he can listen to Jesus instead of all his worries.
- Caspian Crashes the Party: When You Are Jealous, edited by Edward T. Welch, helps children learn to bring their jealousy to Jesus. Caspian’s brother, Jax, is having a birthday party, and Caspian is jealous of all the attention and presents Jax is getting. One thing leads to another until Caspian deflates the bouncy castle that all of Jax’s friends are playing in, bringing the whole party down with it. Caspian’s parents talk with him about jealousy and its bad effects, and eventually peace is restored.
- Halle Takes a Stand: When You Want to Fit In, edited by Paul David Tripp, delves into fitting in and peer pressure. Halle Hedgehog has a group of school friends she sits with at lunch and plays with at recess. One day, the whole group excludes another girl and decides to be mean to her. This bothers Halle, but she doesn’t say anything because she doesn’t want to be excluded too. Halle’s teacher, Mr. Owl, talks to her about who she really needs to fit in with, and how she can speak out against bullying because Jesus is with her.
Each of these stories help children process challenging situations through a biblical lens. Instead of moralism, each book focuses on the grace and hope we have in Jesus, not an ability to change on our own. Each character depends on Jesus and, in turning to him, lives by faith.
Parents and caretakers are encouraged to enter into meaningful conversations with their kids, teaching them to live by faith in the details of everyday life, just like the animals did. After the story, each book contains information for parents on how to use God’s Word to help children apply biblical, gospel-based truths to the specific problem addressed in the book, as well as Scripture to remember in times of trouble. Enriching for both parents and children, the Good News for Little Hearts series is based on CCEF’s model of hope and help that encourages a growing relationship with Jesus in the midst of challenging circumstances.
About the Editors:
David Powlison, MDiv, PhD, (1949–2019) was a teacher, counselor, and the executive director of the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF). He wrote many books and minibooks, including Speaking Truth in Love; Seeing with New Eyes; The Biblical Counseling Movement: History and Context; Good and Angry: Redeeming Anger, Irritation, Complaining, and Bitterness; Making All Things New: Restoring Joy to the Sexually Broken; God’s Grace in Your Suffering; and Safe and Sound. David was also the editor of The Journal of Biblical Counseling and several of the Good News for Little Hearts children’s books.
Nan Powlison loves to write and illustrate children’s books for her friends and seven grandchildren. Nan worked with her husband, David, to edit three books in the Good News for Little Hearts series: Zoe’s Hiding Place, Jax’s Tail Twitches, Gus Loses His Grip, and Buster Tries to Bail.
Edward T. Welch, MDiv, PhD, is a licensed psychologist and faculty member at the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF). He earned a PhD in counseling (neuropsychology) from the University of Utah and has a Master of Divinity from Biblical Theological Seminary. Ed has been counseling for nearly forty years and has written extensively on the topics of depression, fear, and addictions. His biblical counseling books include Shame Interrupted, When People Are Big and God Is Small, Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave, Depression: Looking Up from the Stubborn Darkness, Crossroads, Running Scared, When I Am Afraid, Side by Side, A Small Book about a Big Problem, and A Small Book for the Anxious Heart. He edited Buster’s Ears Trip Him Up, Henry Says Good-Bye, and Caspian Crashes the Party.
Paul David Tripp, MDiv, DMin, is the president of Paul David Tripp Ministries, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to connect the transforming power of Jesus Christ to everyday life. Paul is a best-selling author of many books on Christian living, including How People Change, Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands, A Quest for More, Relationships: A Mess Worth Making, Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family, New Morning Mercies: A Daily Gospel Devotional. He edited Halle Takes a Stand. He has been married for many years to Luella, and they have four grown children.
About the Illustrator: Joe Hox was raised on a farm in southern Iowa, where he doodled whenever he wasn’t spading thistles or feeding pigs. Everyone knew by his crooked hay rows that he would choose art over farming. Hox earned his BA in Art and Education from Dordt College, and his MA from the University of Nebraska. Today he lives with his wife and four children in Pella, Iowa, where he illustrates and teaches art. He has illustrated all of the books in the Good News for Little Hearts series and The Moon is Always Round.