The Moon is Always Round

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Even young children want answers to the hard questions about God and suffering. In The Moon Is Always Round, seminary professor and author Jonathan Gibson uses the vivid imagery of the moon to explain to children how God's goodness is always present, even when it might appear to be obscured by upsetting or difficult circumstances.

In this beautiful, full-color illustrated book, he allows readers to eavesdrop on the conversations he had with his young son in response to his sister's death. Father and son share a simple liturgy together that reminds them that, just as the moon is always round despite its different phases, so also the goodness of God is always present throughout the different phases of life.

A section in the back of the book offers further biblical help for parents and caregivers in explaining God's goodness to children. Jonathan Gibson reminds children of all ages that God's goodness is present in the most difficult of times, even if we can't always see it.


Jonathan Gibson (PhD, Cambridge) is ordained in the International Presbyterian Church, UK, and is associate professor of Old Testament and Hebrew, Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia. He is coeditor with Mark Earngey of Reformation Worship, contributor to and coeditor with David Gibson of From Heaven He Came and Sought Her, and Covenant Continuity and Fidelity: A Study of Inner-Biblical Allusion and Exegesis in Malachi. He is married to Jacqueline, and they have two children: Benjamin and Leila.


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 of the Good News for Little Hearts series.


“It is with the greatest pleasure and sense of privilege that I commend this book about Leila, Jonny and Jackie Gibson’s precious, stillborn daughter. As I held Leila’s tiny lifeless body in my arms, I wondered what great things God would do through her brief, mainly hidden, life in this world. May this beautiful and poignant reflection, from a loving and devoted father, bring God’s compassion and comfort to many. She being dead yet speaks—Leila the Evangelist!”
Ian Hamilton, Former minister of Cambridge Presbyterian Church, England

The Moon Is Always Round offers gentle instruction to the hearts of our children when life in this world has broken their hearts.”
Nancy Guthrie, Author of What Every Child Should Know about Prayer

“When our children were growing up, we sought out books to read to them, and a little later, books that they could read themselves. Many of them they wore out, unselfconsciously memorizing prose and poetry alike. The Moon Is Always Round has now been added to the ‘must-read-and-cherish’ list, not only because it is a good story and a true story, but because it is an important story that they will need to think about all their lives.”
D. A. Carson, Author of How Long, O Lord? Reflections on Suffering and Evil

“It’s always best to rely on what we know to be true, rather than be guided by feelings. It’s an important lesson, especially for boys and girls, and Jonny Gibson teaches it in his wonderful, new book for children, The Moon Is Always Round. Through a tender, yet tough story—and beautiful illustrations—Jonny provides a heartwarming guide to any parent shepherding their child(ren) through times of loss and grief. I give a hearty thumbs-up to this special book!”
Joni Eareckson Tada, Author of A Place of Healing: Wrestling with the Mysteries of Suffering, Pain, and God’s Sovereignty

“This sweet and touching book is wonderfully simple without being at all simplistic. The metaphor of the always-round moon will stick with children and parents alike. The lesson here is a profound one for any family wrestling with grief, but it is also a needed reminder for every Christian who may ever doubt the goodness of God.”
Kevin DeYoung, Author of The Biggest Story

“When we experience a deep loss, it’s easy to doubt God’s goodness. But that is exactly when we need to be reminded that God’s tender, personal love for us never changes. Kids need to know that just as much as anyone else, and this beautiful book will give parents a way to help them understand that truth. But don’t think this book is just for kids. Anyone who has experienced a deep loss will be comforted by this book’s simple reminder that the moon is always round.”
Libbie Groves, Author of Grief Undone and Becoming a Widow

“Most Christian children’s books get too preachy. They say too much and see too little—like a bad sermon. Not this book. Jonny Gibson has given us a modern-day psalm for children that takes us into the depths and points us to faith in God. Thank you, Jonny. Well done!”
Paul Miller, Author of J-Curve: Dying and Rising with Jesus in Everyday Life and A Praying Life

Additional Details

0.65 LBS
8.75 (in)
8.75 (in)
0.35 (in)
Jonathan Gibson
Publication Date:
Page Count:
Age Level:

11 Reviews

  • 4
    Sensitive Topic

    Published by Laura V. Hilton on 11 29 2019

    THE MOON IS ALWAYS ROUND made me cry. A sweet book to help children understand that even when it doesn't seem like it, the moon is always round and God is always good. The subject matter is about a stillborn baby so children not wrestling with that might not comprehend. However, if you or someone you know had a late-term miscarriage it'd be a good book. Recommended for children's pastors or counselors.

    I was given a copy free. All opinions are my own.

  • 4
    Good for grieving families.

    Published by Beauty in the Binding on 11 26 2019

    The Moon is Always Round, written by Jonathan Gibson and illustrated by Joe Hox, aims to remind children that God is always good, just like the moon is always round. Though we can’t always see the full shape of the moon, we know it is always round. Though we can’t always see God’s goodness, we know He is good all the time.

    The Moon is Always Round makes me cry every time I read it. The boy’s baby sister is stillborn and he struggles to understand. It’s based on the real-life experience of the author and his son. The illustrations in The Moon is Always Round are lovely and the story captured both of my daughters’ interest. However, both agreed that they don’t want to read it again because it is so sad.

    The Moon is Always Round by Jonathan Gibson is a good resource for a family dealing with grief over the loss of a loved one, but it is not a book that my children want to return to for entertainment.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.

  • 5
    The Moom is Always Round

    Published by ReneeK on 11 26 2019

    This book has some stunning illustrations throughout the pages. It’s also a hard topic to talk about losing someone close to you. The story isn’t for everyone but it centers on a mom who loses a child during a late term miscarriage.

    It is intended and gives hope to a child during a difficult time. The story is based off the authors own lost of having a stillborn child. This is a hard topic that I haven’t had to face myself. I couldn’t image having to explain this to a child. The book is done well and I think it would be helpful explaining to a child when you have no words yourself to explain such a hard topic if you’re hurting.

    I received a free copy of this product

  • 4
    God Is Faithful

    Published by MaureenT on 11 23 2019

    This is a book that is written with love, and not for every child, but there is a need, and trying to help a young one deal with the death of a sibling.
    Yes, no matter what the moon is always round, and symbolizes that God is always with us, he is ever Faithful.
    What a wonderful way to share a Christian book with a little one, dealing with a loss, this book does come with some lessons to use with your children.
    There are memory verses, and then there is for adults, the story behind this book.

    I received this book through Read With Audra, and was not required to give a positive review.

  • 5
    Beautiful approach and catecism

    Published by Kristin D Bush on 11 22 2019

    Little Ben notices the changes in the sky with the weather and times of day but then he sees that the moon always looks to change shape, yet Ben's dad always reminds him that the moon is always round. Ben's mommy becomes pregnant with a little sister and through it all, the moon is always round. As the come to Ben's baby sister being stillborn, dad reminds Ben that while we do not understand what's going on the moon is always round. At the baby's funeral, dad explains that the moon is always round is means that God is always good. No matter what happens in life, when we do not understand why things happen, God is always good and the moon is always round.

    After reading this book I nearly wanted to cry. How beautiful of words to illustrate such a timeless truth. And then to read that the story is true and based on the author's family. Tears. After going through loss this year, I greatly appreciate this book.

    Family, have this book in your library. Adopt this saying in your family. The moon is always round.

    God is always good.

    {FYI: I received this book from New Growth Press, the publisher, in exchange for my HONEST opinion.}

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