The Rainbow with Dull Colors by J. J. Johnston is a beautiful little book that teaches children the importance of having confidence in how valuable they are to God no matter what they look like or whether they are different from other children. Archie, a self-conscious rainbow up in heaven, is sad because he has very dull colors. The others glow brightly and are sure they are better suited to God’s work. They pick on him and laugh at him. God takes Archie on a tour of the world and explains that he doesn’t always use flashy things to speak to people. After comforting Archie, he explains Archie was made this way deliberately for a reason and then He gives him a special mission.
What a charming book! With lovely illustrations that capture every emotion the rainbows are feeling and that children can sympathize with, The Rainbow with Dull Colors stood out to me as an excellent children’s book. Without being heavy-handed, J. J. Johnston builds a solid explanation for how God cares for those who feel underrated, in friendly language kids can understand. The parallel between Archie being discounted by other rainbows up in heaven and his mission, a shy little girl who is being picked on at school on earth, teaches kids in a nutshell that God understands—He isn’t remote. He sees everything and He cares. The message that God wants us to be proud of our individuality, even if it seems we don’t have what someone else does, is an excellent focus for the story. Archie tries to be someone he isn’t, but only by doing what God has required of him does he find true happiness.
This is the companion for Sarah Scheele's newsletter blog. In it I share reviews for books I'd recommend/are similar to my own.