A 31-day devotional from bestselling author and speaker Joni Eareckson Tada that takes readers on a month-long journey toward the deepest healing God offers. The entire book is framed against Joni’s visit to the healing pool of Bethesda to seek healing where Jesus healed.
As Joni relates aspects of her own journey in dealing with the most painful “unanswered prayer” of her life, readers will learn to see beyond potential quick fixes to the deepest and greatest solutions God has for them. As the journey continues, readers deal with topics such as contentment, patience, unanswered prayer, transformation through suffering, wrestling with God, and hoping in God.
“The key is right there in the word how. Don’t ask God why, but rather ask Him how. How do we keep on? How do we live? How can we care about others when we carry such a heavy load ourselves? How can we be kind and civil when we are racked with pain so much of the time?” Joni Eareckson Tada explains in her book, Beside Bethesda: 31 Days Toward Deeper Healing.
At one hundred and seventy-six pages, this small padded hardbound targets those hurting and in pain, be it physical, emotional, or spiritual. Using the New International Bible, the TLB, NLT, NLT1, MSG, NTME, ESV, and NKNV are also referenced.
Set up as a devotional covering one full month, each day usually starts with several pages of Joni’s personal experiences involving healing. A page titled “Going Deeper” follows that includes written out Bible verses. A simple paragraph ends each day, reminding the reader to focus more on God and less on the issue.
Having been a quadriplegic the past forty-seven years, the author understands frustration, loneliness, and physical disadvantages. Correlating John 5:2-9 in the Bible of Jesus healing the lame man at the pool of Bethesda, she shows that same God can offer true peace, deep healing, and contented understanding, even in the turmoil of life.
Mentioning her upbringing, injury as a teen, expectation of healing at a Kathryn Kuhlman crusade, and her marriage to Ken and his depression along with her cancer issues and physical trials, Eareckson found her deep healing through focusing on Psalms 139, by arduously asking God to search, test, and try her.
As each day’s story, memory, or personal note is told, readers learn how God has protected and sheltered the writer throughout the decades, planning the perfect life He wants her to have. Only when we realize that God is truly in control and not ourselves, we will recognize His love, power, and grace.
Acknowledging our physical, mental, and spiritual inadequacies to God through prayer and being in the Word will give us the courage, fortitude, and strength needed to shed our fears and problems at the Cross of Jesus.
For those who are suffering or challenged in life, this book may be a welcomed remembrance that we are in God’s hands, and there is a purpose to our situation if we accept His will to be done.
Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers for furnishing a complimentary book in exchange for the reader’s honest opinion.