By Shelly Lemons
This year as a church family, we will be trying something new to celebrate the Advent season. Arnold Ytreeide has written four books that follow fictional characters through Advent. The books are written as stories for families to read each day as they prepare for Christmas. For those who are interested, we have chosen to read Ishtar’s Odyssey as a church family for Advent 2020. In addition to the readings, this book has food ideas to make during Advent to learn more about the food eaten in the story.
Here’s a description of the book: Ishtar’s Odyssey follows the ten-year-old son of a Persian wise man as their caravan follows a star across the desert. Ishtar would prefer to stay in the comfort of the palace, but slowly he learns that there’s much to see, do, and learn in this world that can’t be experienced in school. Join Ishtar on the journey with his father and uncles in their search for a newborn king!
This story is engaging for children, teens, and adults. We even recommend it for adults who don’t have children at home. Some of the storyline is a bit intense, so it will be important for parents with young children to preview the text before reading and edit out intense paragraphs if you think your child might become easily scared. The daily readings should take about 15 minutes.
Ishtar’s Odyssey begins on November 29th, which is the first Sunday of Advent. If you choose to participate, you will need to have the book in your home before this date. We recommend ordering the book on your own. It is currently $14.49 on Amazon and $12.99 from Christian Book Distributers. Please let me or the church office know if you would prefer to order a book through the church, and we will make an order if needed.
We hope this opportunity will turn your family’s heart to Jesus in the Advent season!