Local physician shares experiences, spiritual inspiration behind book
If God had let Dr. Joseph DeMay know what he had planned for him, that He would want him to write a 120,000-word book while taking care of a private practice of almost 5,000 patients, DeMay admitted that he would have said there was no way.
“I can’t take time off. I don’t have anyone to cover for me. I would not have done it,” he admitted recently.
But, the way that God enabled him to write it in little amounts daily was, as he said, doable.
The result is a devotional, “Musings of a Christian Physician on the Physical and Spiritual Healing of Man” which can be done on a daily basis, although it can be taken as a continuous story.
DeMay, who acknowledged that he had never written anything of any consequence before, shared the inspiration for his writing. In December 2017, there had been a baby boy born to a brand new set of parents.
“I had a pre-natal visit with them and then they delivered their brand new little boy in the hospital,” DeMay said. “There were no problems prenatally and he looked perfectly fine in the nursery.”
There was, however, something that DeMay found strange but not worrisome. The bilirubin test that was given to the infant to determine if he was jaundiced registered zero. Usually, DeMay said, doctors are concerned when the numbers are too high. Even the nurses found it puzzling that the child’s number was so low.
Hours before the baby was due to be discharged, DeMay ordered a retest on the bilirubin and, for no reason at all, he asked for a complete blood count.
“If we had just done the first test, the bilirubin, and it had been normal, he would have gone home. But, the second one showed that he had over 100,000 cancer cells in his blood,” he said, which meant that the child had lymphoblastic leukemia.
DeMay said that an oncologist at the time had told him that the child’s kidneys were about to shut down because his blood was so thick with cancer cells.
Ever since he was about 8 years old, DeMay said that he liked to read the Bible every day.
“I know a lot of scripture. I memorize things easily,” he admitted.
So, when he got the results from the baby’s tests, the verse that came to his mind was Psalm 118:17: “I shall not die, but live and proclaim the glorious works of the Lord.”
“And that to me was a message from God that this kid’s not going anywhere. He’s going to be with us and he’s going to be healed,” DeMay said.
The first few pages of the doctor’s book, after the prologue, tell the story of this young child.
“It’s an amazing journey…his mom emailed me. He just had his most recent checkup and he has remained cancer-free,” he said. “He’s really a normal two and a half year old.”
DeMay shared that after the initial episode the child experienced after his birth, there were also two other incidents where he should not have survived.
“You would just look at it and say, this is not natural, this should not have happened,” he added.
“But, he’s perfectly OK now. He’s been cancer free for over a year and he’s just thriving,” he said.
After the boy was diagnosed, DeMay had put him on a prayer-line at a church he attends.
With that, he started giving updates and with the updates he got writing more about the spiritual aspects of the situation. His writings were well received, but he decided that the prayer-line was not the best format for sharing his thoughts, so he decided to send them out via email. He advertised on the prayer-line that he was going to do a series on a Christian doctor’s view on healing, faith and science, which eventually became the title of his book.
About 100 people signed up for the series, which started in May 2019.
“I just thought it would be a few weeks. I had a format of three basic topics that I wanted to cover and I started doing them one at a time,” he said. “As I got a few weeks into it, people started to respond and said this is really good, just keep this going. Then others said maybe this ought to be a book. It was never in my mind. There was no design for that.”
“I see now looking back that it’s exactly what the Lord had in mind because it does read like a continuous story from beginning to end,” he added.
He explained that the book deals with all the basic doctrines of the Christian faith and is loosely based on healing.
“Everything’s kind of related to the atonement, of Jesus Christ on the cross. Everything related to that is everything in the Bible,” he said.
In the book, now available on Amazon, DeMay seeks to cover three areas: Healing is in the atonement for all believers; all healing comes from God and He has enabled the development of modern medical interventions; and followers of Jesus Christ have the authority to let the Holy Spirit work through them in healing others.
DeMay admitted that he’s not really an author and that he may never write again.
“This was definitely an annointing for nine months. I ended it in December of 2019. For those nine months, there was not a day that I couldn’t get this out of my head. Thoughts would just come up when I was either exercising or sleeping. Those were the two main times,” he said.
He noted that the book is what he called, “top heavy on scripture.”
“The right ones would be brought to my mind. You have to read them and meditate on them, but then He can bring them to you at any time, bring them to your remembrance,” he said.
“A lot of these scriptures I had kind of forgotten about would come to my mind. I would know where to look them up and they would fit perfectly,” he added.
The book is a book of his views, his ponderings, not Gospel truth, which, he said, is good because he’s not trying to be a theologian. But, he stressed that they are all based on the Word of God and are all defendable by Scripture.
“It’s not just goofy thoughts. It’s all grounded in Scripture,” he added. “It all just evolved, it was not something that was ever, ever planned.”