Friday, July 10, 2015

Always on the Clock

On night at work we became very busy admitting patient after patient.  Looking at the scheduled cases for the day we knew the next shift would be as busy, or even busier, than we had been.  Then, with less than an hour before the next shift would begin, one of the day-shift nurses called in.

It was necessary for us to call the on-call nurse in to take her place because otherwise there wouldn't be enough staff.  This nurse had to come in and work because the other nurse wasn't going to be on the clock.

We never have to fear a time when our Lord is not "on the clock."  He is always working for us, in us and through us.  He is always working in our lives.  He is the Author and Finisher and the Alpha and Omega.  There will never be a time when we are disappointed with His work ethic or with His attendance record.

"O taste and see that the Lord is good:  blessed is the man that trusteth in Him.  O fear the Lord, ye His saints: for there is no want to them that fear Him."  (Psalm 34:8,9.)

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Mr. Harry's Smile

In one of the nursing homes where we do Chapel Services there is a gentleman named Mr. Harry.  Now he tells me that it is his father who is named Mr. Harry and his name is just Harry.  But Mr. Harry is the sort of person who deserves the greatest amount of respect I can show him.

Mr. Harry is a handsome man with a winsome smile.  He is gracious and kind to everyone around him.  I saw proof of this one day in our meetings.

The meeting had already started when one of the aids pushed Mr. Harry's wheelchair into the room right next to Mrs. Loretta.  Mrs. Loretta has been forlorn for the last few months since her husband died.  When Mr. Harry's wheelchair came next to hers, he put out his hand to her and her face brightened with a huge smile.  It was the first time I had seen her smile in weeks.

Why did Mrs. Loretta smile?  Because Mr. Harry loves the Lord, he seeks to walk in a way pleasing to his Lord and in doing so, he spreads love and joy to those around him.  I can just imagine that his days are spent encouraging those with him in this facility, comforting them, sharing joy and contentment with them everywhere he goes. 

Wherever the Lord puts us is where he wants us to bloom and grow and shed joy to those around us.  We may not feel happy about where we are, but we can know He has a purpose and a plan for us being there.  It is no doubt to me that the Lord has Mr. Harry where he is to be a minister of joy and comfort to those around him.  

Let us follow his example and joy in the place the Lord has planted us.  Let us live our lives in ways that glorify our Lord and honor His Son.

"Not that I speak in respect of want: 
for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, 
therewith to be content." 
Philippians 4:11

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

I've Seen You on the Inside

Often in my job as a Labor & Delivery nurse, I have to be the scrub nurse on C-Sections.  I set up the sterile tables, pass the instruments to the physician during the case and clean up afterward.

During one case, I had met the patient when helping another nurse to admit her.  After the surgery I went to her room to check on her and to offer assistance to her nurse.  The patient made a comment about all the nurses knowing her well.  

"Well," I replied, "I've seen parts of you that YOU have never seen, because I have seen you on the inside."  The patient chuckled in agreement.

Such it is with us and the Lord.  He knows us better than we can ever know ourselves.  He knows the truth of our hearts, our motives, our desires, our fears, our dreams, our disappointments.  There is nothing in us that He does not know because He sees us "on the inside."  

He is this very minute acquainted with every cell in our body and every atom that makes up those cells.  He knows if our blood count is high or low, He knows our cholesterol and the status of the blood vessels supplying oxygen to our hearts.  He knew my mother's cancer was there long before we knew it.  He knew my father's arteries were blocked long before his fatal heart attack.  He knew.  He knows.  He will forever know.

If there is someone I am going to trust about my health, and my family's health, it will be the One who knows every cell, every organ, every bone in our bodies.  We do not need to embrace the temptation to fear about our future because, even though that path is hidden from us, He knows every step of it.  And we know it is His perfect will to work all things for our good and for the conforming of us to the image of His dear Son.

Let us trust the Great Physician to heal where He knows best and to give grace and strength and comfort where it is not best to heal.  He is our Comforter, He is our Strength.  Let us run to Him and be glad.

"I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears. 
The Lord redeemeth the soul of His servants: 
and none of them that trust in Him shall be desolate." 
(Psalm 34:3, 22.)

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

The Quartet

In the 1970's Glen and I attended Dauphin Way Baptist Church.   We were blessed to hear great exposition of the Bible and also blessed to hear great music.  Beside the wonderful choir, there were several trios, ensembles and one great quartet.

Each member of that quartet had a fine voice individually, but when their voices blended together it was something bigger and better than simply the sum of the individuals.  Their personalities spilled out through their music and they were a big favorite in the church.

The Scriptures tell us that the Lord Jesus "ever liveth to make intercession for us."  They also tell us that the Holy Spirit "maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered."   The Father receives and responds to these prayers.

We tend to think that prayer begins when we first open our lips to offer a prayer to our Father in heaven.  The truth is, prayer is always in existence between the members of the Trinity.  It is as if a holy Trio is singing and we step up to the microphone with them to add our harmony to the mix.

This is exactly what the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit want, for us to join in with them in agreement with their intercession and acceptance of that intercession.  They desire the Trio to become a quartet.  The addition of the prayers of the saints to the prayers of the Trinity becomes a choir unlike any we could have ever heard.

Keeping this wondrous thought in mind, "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." (Hebrews 4:16.)


My favorite song performed by our quartet in those days was "John the Revelator."  I could not find a video of the Dauphin Way Baptist quartet, but I think you will enjoy this one by The Cathedrals.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Alisa's Sigh

(Dedicated to my dear friend and colleague, Alisa, whose sweet spirit displays the Lord's love and kindness.)

In the Labor & Delivery unit where I work, I am the oldest nurse.  On night shift the younger nurses generally view me as another "mother."  They often come to me for advice and problems, involving their patients, their computers and sometimes their lives in general.

When we come on the unit to work each night each nurse has an assignment.  She may be taking care of a laboring patient, she may have a few postpartum patients or she may be assigned to be the scrub nurse.  The scrub nurse is responsible for performing all the quality assurance controls in the unit and also scrubs in any Cesarean Section performed.

One night I had a few observation patients and Alisa was the scrub nurse.  Terri, our third nurse, came out of her room to tell us the physician had decided to do a C-Section on her patient.  Standing by Alisa I saw her shoulders very slightly droop. I doubt anyone else even noticed it.  I stepped up to our computerized pharmacy machine to remove the preoperative drugs Terri would need and I heard a soft, barely audible, sigh.

 It was Alisa's sigh.  You see, Alisa is ten weeks pregnant.  She has days when she feels really good and days, like this day, when she feels, well, not so good.

I looked at her and asked, "Do you want me to scrub it for you?"

I could tell she really wanted to say "Yes" but she also didn't want to feel as though she was putting me out in any way.

"I don't mind at all," I tried to make her choice a little easier.

"If you do, I'll love you forever!"  she enthusiastically stated, "And I'll bake something for you!"
You see, Alisa makes some of the most delicious cupcakes I have ever eaten.

"You don't have to bake me anything, just love me forever," I joked with her.

Our relationship with the Lord is much like that.

The Scriptures tell us, "And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer, and while they are yet speaking I will hear." (Isaiah 65:24.)  

The Lord is paying attention to us every second of every day.  "The eyes of of the Lord are upon the righteous, and His ears are open unto their cry." (Psalm 34:15.)  He is aware of our every need and He desires to meet those needs. He sees when our shoulders slump and He hears our soft sighs.  He provides for us before we ask, but, we must be paying attention to know He has provided.  Our eyes and ears must be watching Him.  As the writer of Hebrews implores us, we must "consider Him."

Our relationship with the Lord should be one of mutual communication and response.  As we look "unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith," and we will always find His gaze already upon us.

"They that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing."
Psalm 34:10