Psalm 41:3 The Lord sustains them on their sickbed and restores them from their bed of illness.
The problem with a children's hospital is that it's full of sick children! Before I gave birth to Christopher I had never known anyone with a sick child. Sure, my kids had been sick before, but it was the "normal kid stuff" like earaches and colds. This was different. This was not normal.
When you have to spend a lot of time at a children's hospital, tragedy is all around you. Sickness and suffering is the norm. There are kids there with every disease and disorder imaginable, some you've heard of and some you haven't. It is a difficult place to be. Tiny babies and toddlers who have barely begun to live are enduring unbearable suffering that most adults would have difficulty withstanding.
I had nothing but respect for the nurses that made caring for sick children their life's work. One day I was watching our nurse. We were in a 4 bed room. She was caring for 4 sick children each with a very different diagnosis and very different needs. As I watched, she seemed to float from patient to patient giving each one whatever it was that they needed. Her actions were deliberate, compassionate, and positive. She greeted each child with a smile and encouragement. I was puzzled. I had found it impossible to find happiness in this place. The suffering of sick children was overwhelming to me, but here she was smiling and attending to each patient in her care with such sweet sympathy. How could that be? How do you ever get used to this? How do you come back day after day knowing that you will be surrounded by misery and pain?
She had been Christopher's nurse for quite some time, and we had become friendly. I decided to ask her these questions. Her answers really opened my eyes to her heart, the heart of many nurses. She became a nurse because she wanted to help. She wanted to make a difference even if it was just a small one, even if all she could do to relieve suffering was wipe away a tear or hold a sick child's hand. I asked...but what about the ones you can't help? What about the ones who die? How do you do it? How do you keep coming back? She told me that she knows she can't help save everyone and that sometimes helping means helping them die knowing that they are surrounded by people who care about them. Sometimes that's all you can do. She said you have to learn to walk a fine line. A nurse needs to be sympathetic and caring but also needs to maintain a professional distance in order to keep coming back day after day.
I appreciated her honest insight. It was clear that she had a loving heart for children. It's what made her such a great nurse. She was so good with the kids, but she was great with the parents too. The whole family is effected when a child is sick, and she obviously understood that. She was great at answering questions, explaining all kinds of scary medical stuff, and soothing scared and worried parents. She was a bright light in a dark place. We will always be grateful for the wonderful care she gave our son!
Psalm 147:3 He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
I think God uses nurses as instruments of his handiwork.
If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you can pray like this: