Little did I know, when I began Fearfully and Wonderfully by Dr Paul Brand and Philip Yancey, what an insightful and informative book I had picked up. Those who are disturbed by medical discussions of body parts may find the descriptions upsetting so do be careful. I found them fascinating.
Written from the perspective of a Christian missionary doctor who spent his life working with those suffering from leprosy, each function of the body is examined, explained and related to Christianity, It is both enlightening about the body and the faith.
Pain, being my companion through my CRPS, gained descriptions I have sought in my desire to share my experience. I also developed a deeper appreciation for the pain I do have which leprosy patients don’t which causes so much of their disability and isolation. One such description highlight how pain should have a volume control. “Apart from this volume switch through which sensations pass, I could not wear wool or other coarse clothing; my body would incessantly remind me of its scratchy presence and I could hardly concentrate on anything else.” so well explains how my clothes feel in a CRPS flare-up.
Dr Paul Brand eloquently shares his appreciation for pianists and their magnificent performances which only further endeared him to me, being a pianist myself and loving classical music.
Some of my favourite lines include:
“It is a supreme mystery that God has chosen to convey likeness through millions of ordinary people like us.”
“Somehow he [Jesus] moved compliantly among diverse groups without compromising his good-news message of love and forgiveness.”
”But if we fail to find fellowship in our mutual obedience to Christ, our actions will be seen not as the counterbalancing forces necessary for movement, but as spastic, futile contractions.”
”In the spiritual Body, a cell must submit to orders from the Head, for only the Head can judge the needs of the whole Body.”
It is inspiring, captivating and easy to read from start to finish. I highly recommend it and give it a five out of five on the en-JOY-ment scale.
From the back cover:
Discover this updated and combined edition of two bestselling books! The human body holds endlessly fascinating secrets. The resilience of skin, the strength and structure of the bones, the dynamic balance of the muscles—your physical being is knit according to a pattern of stunning purpose. Now Gold Medallion winners Fearfully and Wonderfully Made and In His Image have been completely revised and updated to offer a new audience timeless reflections on the body. Join renowned leprosy surgeon Dr. Paul Brand and bestselling writer Philip Yancey on a remarkable journey through inner space—a spellbinding account of medical intervention, pain and healing, and the courage of humanity. Discover here the eternal truths revealed by our seemingly ordinary existence. The human body is a window into the very structure of God’s creation and a testament to God’s glory.
I received a complimentary copy of the book from InterVarsity Press through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.