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Every Heart Wants the Story

Every Heart Wants the Story

He had to use both arms and tilt his body sideways to support its weight, but you could spot the puffed out chest and unfettered pride from a mile away.

A certain three-year-old had a brand new Bible.

“This is God’s true Word, Ryleigh,” he told his baby sister. “Be gentle with it.” Ryleigh stuffed a handful of Cheerios into her mouth in agreement.

My son’s previous storybook Bible was—ahem—well-loved. So much so that the binding was barely holding the pages together and several stories had been ripped out by an overly enthusiastic baby sister.

Benjamin began asking if he could take his Bible to church, but I wasn’t sure it would make it there in one piece. Yeah, this kid needed a new Bible.

I took the kids to the bookstore and began looking over the selections. The options were a bit sparse—only about 493 choices of kids’ Bibles. Being the ever-practical person that I am, I was drawn first to the most economical Bibles. (Read: The easiest-on-my-wallet Bibles.)

Makes sense, right? I mean, three-year-olds aren’t known for their gentleness. Why spend a ton of money on a fancy Bible that would just get dropped, crinkled, or ripped?

But as I held the cheap option in my hands—the one that, honestly, didn’t look too exciting—my eyes were drawn to another Bible. This one had the silhouette of a lion across the front and looked super manly and cool. “Open me,” the cover whispered, “A story awaits. The greatest story ever told.”

I picked up the Bible and ran my hand over the cover. I glanced at my son who was crouched nearby, examining some story books.

You have an opportunity, Mary. Take it.

I set the cheap option back on the shelf.

There’s something magical about opening a new book for the first time. The smell of the pages, the slight crackle of the cover, and the anticipation of discovering a new adventure stir within us a desire for story.

Because really, every heart wants a story. It’s what we were made for.

But the magic, wonder, and curiosity we feel for a regular book is just a shadow of what we were meant to experience when we read God’s Word. After all, God’s word is living and active, true and unchanging. Things that will never be true of a regular old book.

And that’s why I put the cheap Bible back on the shelf. By investing in a thick, heavy, adventurous, and totally cool looking Bible, I hoped to communicate that this particular book is unique. Set apart. More important than all the rest. By designating a special place for it, practicing holding it with both hands, turning the pages gently, and getting excited about what it says, I hoped to demonstrate that it has value for every member of our family—not just the grown-ups.

I checked the price—yikes. It would make more sense to get the cheaper one, inner-Mary warned. Much more practical.

But sometimes the most practical things aren’t the best things.

I handed the thick, heavy, adventurous, and totally cool looking Bible to Benjamin. His eyes widened.

Decision made.

Benjamin has dropped his new Bible several times. A few pages are bent. A few words are smudged. But each time it’s dropped, he picks it up—oh so carefully—and smooths out the pages. Wipes off the dirt. Folds it in his arms.

Sometimes the practical things aren’t the best things.

And sometimes that’s okay.

By: Mary Holloman is the wife of one husband and mom of two stinkin’ cute kiddos. When she’s not preoccupied trying to keep her kids alive, she works and writes for Greensboro Pregnancy Care Center, serves in her church’s college ministry, beats her husband in ping-pong, and then writes some more. Visit her at and follow her on Instagram at @marytholloman.

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  1. Mary,
    I love this. Love your writing. Love the reminder and the honor of THE BOOK! Thanks.

    • Thank you, Sylvia! 🙂

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