This is the third edition of this collection of daily readings for Christian doctors, dentists and clinical students. Like the first two editions it is written by Christians and based on Scripture. Each day’s theme is based also on the practical experience of that day’s author of the importance of some aspect of their own Christian Faith as it relates to the needs of their patients, or of keeping their own personal priorities in order.
One minor change in this edition is that it is just a little smaller than the earlier ones. The editors tell me that this is so that it will fit into a pocket or handbag. Now this must mean that doctors or students have asked for this. I’m sure the editors had visualised readers keeping the book by their bedside, or at their desk. That is how I would have seen it too. However I like the idea – wherever it came from.
The doctor or dentist gets ready for the clinic and puts on a coat. He or she checks the essentials. There is the stethoscope, the patella hammer, or whatever, and the Doctors’ Life Support! O.K. we are ready. Let’s go!
This attitude puts the day into perspective. It is a reminder that one is trying to identify the problems of a patient who is a person. It is a reminder that you – the clinician – are depending on God-given spiritual insights to be able to recognise spiritual need and hunger even while the patient may have told you only of indigestion, headaches or a mouth ulcer. The square bulge in your pocket may also remind you that you have something worth reading at odd times while waiting for the next move in your program.
Finally, while talking to a patient, you may remember a helpful thought that came in last Monday’s reading, and that you marked to show to a patient on just such an occasion as this.
Paul Brand