Friday, May 16, 2014
Before my parents passed away, I would fly to St. Louis four times a year. We had a family joke that each time I went home to see our parents, something bad happened. The following, from 3-12-06, was about one of those times with Mom and Dad.
I must be bad luck. Last Spring Break, I came to my parents' home in St. Louis. On my second day in Missouri, Mom falls out of bed and breaks her wrist. Yesterday, I flew in from Houston; Mom passes out in the airport. The decision is made to transport her to a nearby hospital- my first ride in an ambulance! That's the good news. The bad news was waiting for five hours in an emergency room waiting area. Fortunately, since Mom arrived via ambulance, she was admitted immediately. Unfortunately, not everyone was so blessed. I saw humanity up close and we are not a pretty species. The only human beings who acted normally in this ER were the children- they were themselves. The adults...well, we leave a little to bit to be desired. The grownups tend to avoid eye contact and stare off into space. Many nod off to sleep. The television plays non-stop to no one's attention. Those in pain aren't rational. A man in pajamas swore loudly every ten minutes or so while waiting to be treated. A lady with a severe migraine alternately yelled and moaned that her head was falling off. An old man wheeled his old wife in carrying a plastic bag crammed with pill bottles. She sat, incoherent with her tongue hanging out, for over an hour. Some limped, some wheezed, and some were tethered to oxygen tanks. All were there for one reason- relief.
Everyone in the ER was clamoring for the attention of the medical staff. The staff seemed immune- you must have to numb yourself to the suffering. I learned the most important word in that ER: PROTOCOL. You had to be checked in according to a certain procedure or you did not get treated; no exceptions. Undoubtedly, that method is a necessity to avoid total chaos. I bet Jesus didn't have a protocol. People came to him and he healed them. No insurance forms, no referrals, and no specialists. I like his way better. People went away joyful from their encounters with the Messiah. I didn't see anyone rejoicing yesterday, just enduring. When religious leaders condemned the Savior for congregating with sinners, he countered with the argument that "it's not the healthy who need a doctor but the sick." The Lord defined sin as a sickness that has infected the whole human race. There is only on antidote and we can't buy it with a Medicare card and it can't be prescribed in a St. Louis ER. It can only be administered by the Great Physician of Nazareth. And his prescription doesn't have to be refilled!
Applicable quote of the day:
"The greatest evil is physical pain."
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Posted by Steve Hawley at 7:24 PM