Goodbye to Goodbyes – Lauren Chandler


I recently said the hardest goodbye I’ve ever had to say.

We put her down in the cold-cot, being careful with her lifeless neck. And with pangs of pain, we left the room, saying goodbye to our stillborn daughter.

Worried about how we’d share this with our two-year-old son, I was so happy to come across Lauren Chandler’s latest kids’ book on Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead.

This was the passage we read before leaving that room. And its title is fitting: Goodbye to Goodbyes.

Seeing Jesus’ Tears

With sweet simplicity and faithfulness to John’s gospel, Goodbye to Goodbyes retells the story in a way that has my son turning the pages and has me turning for the tissues.

‘Jesus saw her tears. And then it happened. His heart broke.’

His heart breaks for the broken-hearted. He loves his friends.

He loves his friends.

Children understand the richest theology in a way that adults struggle to get our heads around. After all, to encounter the real Jesus we have to come to him like children (Matthew 19:14).

This book helps me to do that every bit as much as my son.

Hearing Jesus’ roar

You may have read the story in your Bible. I’m glad for it. This is how we read it before saying goodbye to our daughter.  

But while nothing compares to God’s powerful word, there’s power in a picture. When I saw a beautifully illustrated Christ crying with Lazarus’ grief-stricken sisters, it felt like I was there.

And when Jesus yells to Lazarus ‘like a lion’s mighty roar,’ the story – along with Lazarus and my daughter – comes alive. Unbelief makes way for worship.  

So whether you have children or not, if you want to grow in your love for Jesus, get yourself a few kids’ books. Lauren Chandler’s Goodbye to Goodbyes would be a great place to start.