every man heart lay down African Christmas story

We like to add a new Christmas book to our collection each December — but this year, I completely forgot until this morning. So now I’m on the hunt for something really excellent that I can pick up at the bookstore this week. Any recommendations? I’d love to hear if you have a must-read that you can share.

Every Man Heart Lay Down African Christmas Story

Here’s one of my favorites already in our collection. It’s called Every Man Heart Lay Down by Lorenz Graham and it’s wonderful. My mom read this one to me when I was a child and I loved it then, too. It’s an African version of the Nativity story and it’s told with such simplicity and dignity. On the very last page, the wise men are kneeling for the baby, and the title words enter the scene:

“And they look on the God pican
And every man heart lay down.”

I cry every time.

Every Man Heart Lay Down African Christmas Story

The illustrations by Colleen Browning are wonderful as well (aren’t Mary and Baby Jesus on the cover the sweetest thing?).

Every Man Heart Lay Down African Christmas Story