Book Review: A Good and Perfect Gift

Book Review: A Good and Perfect Gift May 22, 2012

Early in her first pregnancy, Amy Julia Becker found herself chafing at its timing.  Having a baby a semester before she finished seminary was not a great plan.If only we had waited, she thought. And then it hit her, Then you wouldn’t have had this child.

When her daughter, Penny, is born with Down syndrome, Amy Julia is shocked and terrified, but remembers that she was to have this child.

A Good and Perfect Gift details Amy Julia and Peter Becker’s first few years with their daughter. It is a refreshingly honest account of new parents learning to care for a child who will never meet their original expectations but who will continually amaze them with her indomitable spirit. Peter quickly reconciles himself with their new reality, but Amy Julia fights against it. She shares her grief, her struggles with faith and her relationship with God, her sensitivities as a parent of child with a disability, and her fears as they expand their family. And she shows how her love for this child, for Penny, expands along the way.

As the Beckers learn about people with Down syndrome, they hear stories that make them cringe and others that encourage them. Amy Julia tells Peter, “It’s the thought that she might teach me to slow down, to love deeply, to compete less, to live more fully—those are the stories that bring hope.” As she tells Penny’s story, she manages to bring that hope.  God, after all, not only redeems those who are broken emotionally and spiritually, but also those who are broken physically.  There is also the hope that these children can enrich lives far more than believed possible.

A Good and Perfect Gift is not for other families with disabled children or friends of families with a person who has Down syndrome; this book is for everyone. It teaches all of us to look deep inside and see our fatal faults and our marvelous possibilities—and to see them in the people around us. This book is about grace: receiving grace in the face of great struggle and disappointment, giving grace when our friends and family cannot meet our needs, and finding grace to move forward in our lives. Beautifully written, A Good and Perfect Gift is the gift of an honest story that points us to the good and perfect God.

We’re giving away a copy of A Good and Perfect Gift this week!  Please leave a comment below for your chance to win!

On May 31 at noon (EST), we’ll pick a name in a random drawing from all eligible entries received and send you an email notification if you are the winner!

Limit one (1) entry per person; NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. Open only to legal residents of the 50 United States and Washington D.C. who are 18 or older as of date of entry.

"Loved it! Passed it along to my friends and family. Definitely a lot of laugh-out-loud ..."

Bossypants by Tina Fey
"This brokenness I can feel every day, when I watch the news realizing the many ..."

Darkness Undone: Reflections on The Mushroom ..."
"I just began reading Amy Simpson's book last night (Kindle.)My eldest son has PTSD, depression. ..."

Why Do We Steer Clear of ..."
"This asks a lot of great questions between the church and mental illness. As someone ..."

Why Do We Steer Clear of ..."

Browse Our Archives