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Grasping Heaven: Tami L. Fisk, A Young Doctor's Journey to China and Beyond Paperback – 1 September 2010
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Grasping Heaven also reveals the striking parallels of Dr. Fisk and the life of Dr. Broomhall, who forty years ago was the first to work among the Yi. His time was cut short due to the communist take over. After three years he had to leave the country.
With excerpts from Tami's journal, the book shares her anecdotes and observations of the Yi people in China, in particular her stories of being a Martian.
I have recently come to a startling conclusion: I am, in fact, a Martian. Let me explain. Since being in Zhaojue, many people have gaped at me with looks that can only mean theyve discovered a life form never encountered before. Whenever I did anything, such as speak, eat, or buy things, they would congregate around me, watch in awe, and discuss it among themselves, probably commenting on how human or not my actions appeared. Whenever I was inside a place with windows, people would come in waves for a glimpse of this new creature. - Though to be fair, Im equally fascinated with the Yis faces, each of which tells a different story
Also included are some of her most famous stories are her culinary adventures. Drunken Shrimp. Have you ever tried that? These are the freshest shrimp Ive ever eaten. They certainly were not overcooked. They werent even dead. In this local specialty, the chef takes live shrimp and marinates them in a series of sauces, letting them flush out their little digestive tracts. They are served in a mixture of alcohol, chili, and other spices. The ones on the bottom of the dish are in a drunken stupor, but the ones on top, because they're not fully soaking in the alcohol mixture, tend to wake up and start moving. Once one jumped out of the dish! The key is to take on that is not moving, and hope that is doesn't sober up on the way to your mouth 'cause it s rude to throw it back!
Along with the interesting, and often funny entries included in Grasping Heaven, the book provides an introduction to the new organization named MSI which was founded by Dr Jim Taylor III, the great-grandson of Hudson Taylor. The amazing history of how God hath wrath the words of Dr. Taylor blends into Tamis life story.
It also gives a glimpse into the life and beliefs of the Yi people a plight that will hopefully attract some readers to consider living and working among them. Finally, Tamis insights on heaven are an encouragement and will serve as an eye-opener to many readers.
A final poem by Tami clearly tells how she has grasped heaven.
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- Language : English
- Paperback : 263 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1935265342
- ISBN-13 : 978-1935265344
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Until I read this book I had no idea of the challenges modern day missionaries face. Some of the "minor" challenges would have seemed major to me, such as the smog in China turning Dr. Tami Fisk's white blouse gray the day she arrived, the challenges of learning a language with pictographic writing and then having to learn even more after she had finished school because of the country's many dialects, and the food that one is required to eat to avoid giving offense. (Pig head, eaten skin, hair and all, fried honeybees... yuck!)
She faced many trials as a medical missionary and in her later struggle with melanoma, but through them all she lovingly served others in any way she could wherever she was. She was aware of God's leading, love, and presence with her, so she accepted these trials as ordained by Him to draw her closer to Himself and refine her faith. She genuinely loved the Yi people of the Great Cold Mountains of China, and it showed in the compassion with which she cared for their health and became "Auntie Fei" to their children. As death approached, her concern was for her parents. Although emaciated, she lifted dumbbells so she could "help" more when her mother lifted her. She lamented that she would not be around to care for her parents in their old age.
The first part of the book about Tami's childhood doesn't always ring true, but don't let this put you off on the book. Skip or skim through the first 30-40 pages and move on to the adult part of the story which was written from her letters and journals. As parents know, no child is that perfect! Tami, like all of us, was God's work in progress. Her life is a challenge to all of us to embrace His refining process as she did. From the way she "fought the good fight," I'm sure that she is wearing many crowns in heaven, and the effects of her love and her short life's work are still echoing in the lives of all she touched in China and around the world.
Her faithfulness was inspiring.