Sharei Green and Beckah Selnick have written a beautifully illustrated, poetic book of well known Scripture stories that is perfect for opening up conversations on the beauty and holiness of darkness for any age. The opening page captures well the purpose of this book,
“Darkness and blackness and night are too often compared to lightness and whiteness and day and found deficient, but let us name the beauty and goodness and holiness of darkness and blackness and night.”
This book challenges readers to reflect, listen and wonder in fresh ways about our stories of creation, Abraham, Exodus, Samuel, Jesus and more as we are invited into wonder and awe of the ways God works in darkness. For young children, often afraid of the dark, this is a great book to help them find comfort and rest and peace in the darkness as they discover the powerful ways God has worked in the night. And in a world where the comparison of lightness as good and darkness as bad has been ascribed to people in the construct of race, this book is an excellent way to challenge perceptions that kids can form from a young age about race in the church.
I highly recommend you add this book to your church or family library. It is an accessible read for even the youngest of readers and the engaging and beautiful illustrations may prompt many questions too. And for beginning or continuing an intentional anti-racism conversation as you reflect on race in church and in theology, this is a great book to read with older kids. As an adult reading this book I have been challenged to reflect in new ways on Scripture as I consider lightness and darkness in relation to race and how that has influenced my own theology.