Dear God, I don't get it!
by Patti Maguire Armstrong
Illustrated by Shannon Wirrenga
Waterford, MI: Bezalel Books, 2009
Why does God answer some prayers and not others? This is a question that plagues even adults. Sometimes, we pray so hard and think we know what God should do in our lives. And then, God does something else or He does nothing. What gives? For children, these questions can be even more acute. Without a lifetime of experience to rely on, God ignoring a prayer can be a faith-shaking incident.
That is the premise behind "Dear God, I Don't Get It." Patti Maguire Armstrong tells the story of sixth-grader Aaron Ajax. His father just lost his job and he has to move from Montana to North Dakota as a result. He prayed and prayed that this would not happen, and God just didn't pay attention. He has to leave his friends behind and while his younger brother Luke is making new friends easily, Aaron seems to only be making enemies. Nothing is going well for him. He concocts a plan to be a "hero" in order to get some positive attention, but that blows up in his face as well. Yet, God can use even bad things for good, and by the end of the story, everything has worked out, and Aaron decides that God knows what He is doing after all.
Armstrong writes with a good sense of humor that will appeal to the 8 - 12 age group that this book is targeted toward. It is a story with an important lesson on prayer for children, and the adults who care for them (and who might read this book with them). For those interested in delving into the story on a deeper level, there are discussion questions in the back.