This week my children and I had the chance to read a new book together. It is The Barber Who Wanted To Pray by R.C. Sproul.
This picture book is the story of a dad having family worship with his kids. One of his children asks how to pray. The father tells the story of Martin Luther and his barber. This picture book is an interesting thing. It is written for older children, rather than younger ones. Honestly, I think it would be most appropriate for 4-8th graders. I think 8th graders would benefit from it and grow from it, though they might think a picture book is young for them. My 3rd grade daughter did enjoy the story, but I'm not sure how much she understood about Luther's explanation of prayer. As an adult, I thought it was wonderful and it did encourage me. Essentially, Luther explains that he prays through the Lord's Prayer, the Ten Commandments, and the Apostle's Creed. He meditated on the statements of each and what that meant to his heart as he prayed to the Lord.
Before writing this review, I looked up Martin Luther's book A Simple Way To Pray. The story told in this picture book is a true one. This book is out of print, but can be found on the web as a public file. Now, I am looking forward to reading it. Here's a link to it if you'd like to read it: http://www.hope-aurora.org/docs/ASimpleWaytoPray.pdf
This book reinforces family worship, because it shows a family worshiping together. The discussion was a bit deeper than I think my kids (3, 6, and 8) could handle right now. I'd instead start with Jeanette Groth's book Prayer: Learning How to Talk to God for younger children. For children grades 3-7, I would recommend this book. It is a great teaching tool of how to explain prayer.
Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from Crossway.