Book Review - New Straits Times newspaper April 1997
Review of Books by Lee Bee Teik in the
New Straits Times
Reflections of life issues
By Pang Yin Fong
Lifestyle Section, New Straits Times, April 1997
Inspirational books always leave me refreshed and in a reflective mood. Particularly when the author actively encourages the reader to meditate and reflect upon the written word, one can't help but take time to ponder on the meaning therein.
In her series of four books published last year, Dr Lee Bee Teik gently leads the reader from one subject to the next, giving opportunity for him or her to think about the issues concerned. The reader is also encouraged to pray about some of these issues based on the belief that prayer can bring about change in different situations or at least in his/her response to these situations.
Written in an easy-to-read, conversational style, each topic is dealt with within one or two pages and often ends with related Scripture verses for further reference. Sometimes relevant poems and illustrations are used.
Listen to God's Whispers is a timely reminder that the hustle and bustle of modern living need not draw us away from God. Instead in the midst of busy routines, Lee shares that God continually speaks words of encouragement, rest and healing to our souls.
This slim volume of devotions is about learning how to be still so that God is free to reveal something of Himself to enrich and deepen us. The author, a medical graduate from Australia's Monash University, shares most of her thoughts and experiences in the first person.
Listen to the Children is a collection of conversations to help adults understand children. Each conversation comes with the author's interpretation of a child's perception of the preceding situation and a cartoon illustration. The humour and cheekiness of the children in each event Lee records gives a heart-warming peek into the innocent and not-so-innocent minds of the young ones as they try to make sense of the strange adult world that surrounds them.
Not only do some of the conversations reveal the simple faith that children have in the Almighty, they will also help adults understand and appreciate the charges under their care. The author, a devoted mother of three, hopes that the readers will be encouraged to foster their children's "spiritual and emotional development in an environment of listening acceptance and loving discipline."
As coordinator of REST, an inter-denominational Christian ministry which encourages reconciliation and spiritual transformation, Lee does a lot of one-to-one counselling. Through the years as a student, wife, mother, church member, doctor and friend, she has also lent a listening ear to those in need of one.
Listen to the Heart Cries & Pray Specifically is a collection of her conversations and experiences with people who have opened their hearts to her. Details and names have been changed to protect their privacy.
Meant to encourage those who have experienced similar pain and suffering, and to remind them that God knows and cares, this book is divided into four sections - children, God's people, general topics and full-time Christian workers.
The writer touches on issues of current interest like ways to help teenagers avoid unhealthy activities, foreign maids and information technology, as well as age-old issues like how to deal with grief, broken families, sickness and childlessness. Scripture references are given after each heart cry to bring the reader back to what God's Word has to say about the topic.
In "Do I Really Wish I Were Born A Man?" "Is It A Crime To Be A Woman?" and "The Evil of Myths", Lee examines the stereotypical (and oftimes discriminatory) roles that society places upon men and women. The poor, the unfortunate an the disabled are also give space in `Poor and Afraid', `Handcuffed in Chow Kit' and `Gopeng Heart Cries'.
Looking at Creation (God's Other Book) is full of her recollections of a retreat she shared with a group of Chistians some time back. The spiriitual parallels that one can draw from a deep appreciation of Nature can usually be made only when one consents to be still and silent before God, asserts the author.
Designed as books to initiate reflection upon a wide range of topics, this series does not attempt to delve too deeply into any single issue. Reading these books, however, will certainly give one not only food for thought but also a desire to see what the Bible has to say on many of these life issues.
About the Author
Dr Lee Bee Teik, a graduate in Medicine from Monash University, Australia, is the Chaplain of ReconRe, a ministry founded on reconciliation. She is married to Rev Hwa Yung, Principal of Seminari Theologi Malaysia, and they have three children. Her other books include "Deepening Joy" (SU/FES) and "Building a Love House is Hard Work" (Malaysian CARE). She is a full-time homemaker with a home-based ministry of writing and pastoral counselling.