Tomas Looks Up and Out helps children learn how God considers us and wants us to look to him for help so that we consider others too.
Tomas Turtle starts his day thinking more about himself than others. Not only is he annoyed that his sister Tori’s cough kept him awake, but he also brags to all of his friends about his successes. It’s not until he gets sick and his friends take care of him that Tomas learns to look up to God and out to others.
Edited by counselor Alasdair Groves, Tomas Looks Up and Out offers concrete, grace-based help for growing in empathy and is part of the Good News for Little Hearts series, which brings gospel wisdom and biblical counsel to families. Based on CCEF’s model of hope and help, each story focuses on an animal family’s real-life issues, encouraging young readers toward a growing relationship with Jesus during challenging circumstances.
J. Alasdair Groves, MDiv, is a counselor and Executive Director of CCEF where he previously served as the director of CCEF’s School of Biblical Counseling. He also co-founded and was executive director of a biblical counseling center in Northern New England. He is the co-author of Untangling Emotions and editor of Tomas Looks Up and Out. Alasdair has published a number of articles in the Journal of Biblical Counseling, hosts CCEF’s podcast and produced many blogs, videos, and audio resources. Alasdair and his wife, Lauren, live in New England with their three children. Alasdair is a fiction enthusiast, plays ultimate frisbee, and loves to produce and enjoy both good food and good music.
Joe Hox was raised on a farm in southern Iowa where he doodled whenever he wasn’t spading thistles or feeding pigs. Everyone knew by his crooked hay rows that he would choose art over farming. Joe earned his BA in art and education from Dordt College, and his MA from the University of Nebraska. Today he lives with his wife and four children in Pella, Iowa, where he illustrates and teaches art. Joe has illustrated all the Good News for Little Hearts series books.
“This beautiful picture book encourages readers to consider others’ needs above their own and to ask God for the help required to do so. As a mother of four young children who are learning to think outside of themselves, I'll be reaching for this resource often!”
Hunter Beless, Founder of Journeywomen Ministries; author of Read It, See It, Say It, Sing It! and Amy Carmichael: The Brown-Eyed Girl Who Learned to Pray
“I am personally thankful that this series keeps growing! Each book offers me a way to engage with my children about how to live out our Christian faith without being preachy or lecturing! In Alasdair Groves's new addition, kids will find Tomas relatable and will learn along with him just how good, sweet, and right it is when we care for the people around us and earnestly seek their good.”
Lauren Whitman, Faculty and Counselor, Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF); author of A Biblical Counseling Process
“We all (children and adults!) need reminders to look beyond ourselves and our own interests and to remember the joy of truly seeing and considering others. Groves has written a refreshing and relatable story that helps children see the beauty of Christ’s heart of outward love and encourages them to grow to be more like him. What a gift that the precious young ones in our lives can be shepherded in this way.”
Esther Liu, Faculty and counselor, Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF)
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