Every now and then we come across a book that restores our hope for a better time in future and opens our eyes to the treasures around us that we often fail to see because of being held captive in fog of uncertainty. Beth Praed’s inspirational book So You Have a Disease is one of them.
Beth starts the book with the uncomfortable revelation about her health in the Preface to the book: in the words of her doctor, she is dying of multiple sclerosis. But the many short chapters following this revelation take the reader inside her life’s challenges that each transformed her for better. From her childhood’s near death experience to losing her fitness and a good deal of mobility due to her progressing disease, the suffering in her life moved her closer to her belief in the higher power, God. She shares those precious lessons with readers via this book.
So You Have a Disease is a book easy to read as it is short and individual chapters are just a few pages at most. Yet, the emotional and spiritual impact of Beth’s words is deep and lasting. She narrates her experiences in a simple and beautiful manner that touches the soul. And it is owing to her positive and peaceful voice that many of the tragic incidents described from her memories make a case for seeing the beauty of life instead of cultivating fear or sorrow. As the book’s subtitle “Devotions and Stories to Restore Hope” indicates, her stories, questions, thoughts, and prayers carry hope and faith in the divine good.
There are two main lessons for readers of So You Have a Disease: kindness and gratitude. Beth illustrates both excellently in her many experiences with poor, handicapped, or suffering people—and some animals too. She shows the importance of being kind because it makes life better and of being grateful because it keeps one going. Like most other people of faith, her way of expressing gratitude is praying for all.
Each brief chapter in this book comes with a related biblical verse or prayer, mostly at the end. The author believes in the importance and power of prayer.
So You Have a Disease is also a book of self-improvement via faith. Beth confesses to shedding her former arrogance and pursuit of material values after MS took the toll on her health and mobility. She uses her life experiences to convey the true beauty of life in the many things we take for granted until we lose them. This is a precious lesson in the book delivered straight to the soul.
Beth Praed’s So You Have a Disease is a book everyone should read, particularly those who have been through or are living in difficult times in their lives. This book can change their life for better.
Note: This review was originally done for and posted on Reedsy.