Emmy-award-winning This Is Us actress Chrissy Metz has said prayer is essential to her daily life. In a new children’s book, she encourages children to pray while telling them that God is always by their side.
When I Talk to God, I Talk about You is co-authored by Metz and songwriter Bradley Collins. The book includes illustrations of animal families with the text of rhyming verses about prayer, intended to be read by a parent or adult with a child.
Metz told Christian Headlines, “For me, prayer was always really important. My grandmother instilled that at a very young age. And it really has thankfully stuck with me throughout my whole life. It just means a lot to me.”
Metz wants the book to help children understand that prayer is similar to talking to a friend. “That’s really what prayer is, is a conversation with God,” Metz said. “… I do it all the time. I mean, morning, noon, night and in between. And when you sort of demystify what it is, you really start to create an actual relationship with God. … You don’t have a friendship with a friend if you don’t call them, right?”
Collins said he didn’t understand what prayer was at a young age. He and Metz have been dating since 2020. “My grandfather was very sick,” he told Christian Headlines, referencing a time from his childhood. “And I remember thinking, well, what can I do? And am I allowed to pray? Do I know what to say? Am I allowed to talk to this Higher Power and ask for help and guidance? Mainly I was praying for his health and for my family to feel better about it all. And he ended up passing when I was in eighth grade. But [for about] five years there, I just didn’t know what I was doing … or if I could or if I should.”
Collins wants children to understand that “you can have a relationship with God,” he said. The book, Metz said, is also for parents who view prayer as a “massive concept” and don’t know where to begin. “Just sort of de-stigmatizing what prayer is” is important, she said. “Hopefully, it’ll touch parents just as much as the children,” she said. Flamingo Books, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers, published it.