Thankfulness & the ESV Illuminated Bible Review

Thankfulness has taken a different shape for me this year and as I sit here on the Eve of the holiday dedicated to gratefulness itself, my heart is truly overflowing. This post houses some of that overflow, as well as my review of the ESV Illuminated Bible. I was going to do them separate but since the Word is central to the source of all my thankfulness, it seemed only fitting to combine!

Thankfulness & ESV Illuminated Bible Review

I received this ESV Illumination Bible complimentary for review purposes. All opinions are mine alone.


Thankfulness & the ESV Illuminated Bible Review

While I have become increasingly better at blooming where I’ve been planted, some Thanksgivings I’ve had to dig deeper than others at finding the good. This year is not one of those. Having Olivia has expanded my heart in unimaginable ways and I have never felt more rich.

This comes at a time when financially, I don’t think I’ve ever been poorer.

Our house is tiny and outdated and we still share a wall with a neighbor. Yet, I am rich.

I have to open my car door with the key itself and she does not drive smooth. Yet, I am rich.

Our job situations are not ideal. Yet, I am rich.

For a girl who struggles with materialism, this really is an aha moment. I know that money doesn’t buy happiness but it’s never been more obvious than now, and staring at that little face of perfection leaves me in awe and in deep, reflective gratitude.

Gratitude for my family, that has sacrificed so much so she could not only exist, but that she could thrive and know love daily.

For my husband, who is ever faithful and ever true.

For my friendships, that give me endless smiles and support.

For my body, which somehow nourished life and is healthy :).

For the fact that I don’t know what it’s like to go to bed hungry or cold.

For God, the good He intends for us and the privilege it is to know Him (or the journey of trying).

Thankfulness & ESV Illuminated Bible Review

There is no better way to learn about Him then by his written Word. When I had the opportunity to review the Illuminated Bible, it wasn’t that I needed more Bibles (I have quite a few of them in various versions). This one simply captured my attention for a couple of different reasons.

It is gorgeous. Beyond gorgeous. The hardback cover embossed with gold is just a hint of what lies beneath in its pages. Each book has its own artful cover designed by artist Dana Tanamachi (and in the back of the book it describes the meaning of the art) and in the margins along the way, various verses or designs pop at out you with their shimmery presence.

Thankfulness & ESV Illuminated Bible Review

The space.  Bible journaling seems to have really gained a lot of traction over the past few years. I see gorgeous drawings and doodles in the margins of Bibles across Instagram. It’s inspiring. This ESV Illumination Bible leaves room on every page for you to draw, doodle and write to your heart’s content. Unfortunately, I’m an awful artist and my attempts would only detract from the pretty pages. I do like to write notes in the margin though, and that is what I’ll be using this extra space for!

Thankfulness & ESV Illuminated Bible Review

I did miss having an index in the back of the book. The only thing this Bible has is the meaning of the book cover art. Which I like, but I miss my index and maps for reference.

What I love most about this ESV Illumination Bible is that it makes me think of the sacredness yet approachable nature of God. It’s pages are ornate and brilliant, much like His holiness. Yet the room it leaves for my interaction, thoughts and designs remind me that it is a relationship and I can come as I am.

I definitely recommend this version. It will light up your life in more ways than one:)

You can get it here!

Hope you all have a truly Happy Thanksgiving!!











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  1. Wow, Angie. I love the words you used to reflect your deep thoughts and gratitude. Yes, I am grateful too for all God has blessed us with . . . especially your growing family! (brought me to tears)
    Well written!