Children’s picture books

God made Me and You: Celebrating God’s design for ethnic diversity

by Shai Linne
illustrated by Trish Mahoney
32 pages / 2018

Reformed rapper Shai Linne has written a children’s book about racism and God’s appreciation for diversity. And it’s really good. As those already familiar with his albums know, Linne loves to delve deep into God’s Word, and his insights are not only profound, but he knows how to present them powerfully. This picture book is no different.

In response to racism Christians typically talk about how we all come from the same two parents so there is, in fact, just one race – the human race. Linne builds on this point, even as he makes another – yes we are all alike in one way, but in others, we are wonderfully different.

And as you would expect a rapper to do, he makes this point in rhyme. The book begins with a teacher arriving late to her class just as a couple of boys are making fun of other kids for their hair, clothes, and skin color. After telling the boys to ask for forgiveness, she teaches the class a lesson about how diversity is a testimony to God’s greatness. She says:

In Genesis 1, what we see in each verse
Is God made a world that is REALLY diverse.

The sun and the moon,
the planets and stars,
Saturn and Jupiter,
Venus and Mars…

Each one is different…
Class, why did God make this?
He made it to show off
His beauty and greatness.

And just as the variety and diversity in the rest of creation speaks of God’s greatness, so too the diversity in Mankind.

He gave some curly hair
while others have straight.
It pleased God to fashion
each wonderful trait.

Brown eyes and green eyes,
hazel and blue,
Each in their own way
works of art we can view.

Some that are deaf
and some that are blind
All have great worth
in God’s sovereign design.

This is a morality tale, and sometimes this type of Christian books can be quite forced – more sermon than story – but the rhythm and rhyme of God Made Me and You carries us along. There so much to love in this fantastic book, from the much-needed message, to the bright colorful pictures kids will love, to the fun bouncing rhymes that make it great fun for mom and dad to read out loud. So two very enthusiastic thumbs up!

Linne has released a children’s album, Jesus Kids, along with the book, and one track shares the same title as the book. You can hear some of the song in the book trailer below. You can also check out a 10-page excerpt from the book here.


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