Thursday, February 24, 2011

I loved a stranger today because He loved her first...

I had an amazing experiencing today at work.  To say it was amazing is... different, because it wasn't necessarily under happy circumstances, but maybe if I explain it, you'll understand better.

I work for a gyn/oncologist.  A lot of the patients we see are older or have had recurring cancers, making their treatment difficult or tiresome, but most truck through it will positive attitudes and a lot of gratitude towards the Dr. I work for because of the time and care he provides for them.  It isn't a rare site to see a "thank you" letter from a husband whose wife has now been cancer free for five years because of the quick action and attention to detail that the Dr. was mindful of.  The Dr. served a Spanish-speaking LDS mission, so his language skills have often been a blessing to his practice as well.

Anyway, a Hispanic woman came in today that I had scheduled an appointment for two days ago for her daughter.  Her daughter, 21, has slight mental retardation and was recently admitted to the hospital for what her family thought was an episode of of kidney stones and gall bladder stones, since she has a history of both.  Her gallbladder was removed, so when she began having the pain again, accompanied by bleeding, the doctors were confused.  This prompted some more diagnostic tests and bladder cancer was discovered.  She was referred to the office I work at so that we could be sure the cancer hasn't spread to other areas prior to surgery, to prevent multiple trips to the OR.

I was checking them out today and having spoken with the mother two days prior, was so surprised by her sweet demeanor.  Despite the fear and anxiety she feels for her daughter, she was still humble enough to be kind to me and all who worked with her in our office.  She said to me upon leaving, in her heavily-accented English, "We had no clue any of this would happen.  We thought it was the stones again.  I asked God, why not me? Why my daughter? But I know He is teaching us something."

I almost started crying, but fought  it back so hard because she was already being so strong, I didn't want to add to her anxiety.  At that moment, a feeling came over me that I cannot accurately put into words.  In that very instance, I loved this stranger because I understood and I felt how much our Heavenly Father loved her.  I understood that her struggles right now for her family might be great, but that she was loved so greatly by Him and that somehow He would bring peace into, not only her life, but the lives of the members of her family, through this situation.

I contemplated those feelings since she left our office, even as busy as I was trying to check out other patients and close down for the day.  Obviously, I'm still thinking about it.  I hope that when she comes back to the office in a few weeks that I will be able to express these feelings to her in a way that coincides with whatever her beliefs are and in a way that isn't offensive or overwhelming.  I'm thinking of writing a little card up for her and slipping it to her before she leaves.  It's hard because I have to be professional, but our Dr. does great missionary work even from his professional position.  To be honest, I don't intend it to be a missionary opportunity really, I only want her to know how much she is loved.  I want to share the strong impressions I felt about her so that she might have a little bit of happiness during this trial of her and her daughter's life.  If it works out as a missionary opp., wonderful, if not, then she will at least know that she is loved by her Heavenly Father and me.

Now I truly understand these scriptures  a little better:

John 4:7-12:

7 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.

8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

9 In this was manifested the love of God towards us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.

10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

12 No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

Romans 13:8

8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.

D&C 88:123

123 See that ye love one another; cease to be covetous; learn to impart one to another as the gospel requires.

Ephesians 4:2

2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love

Thank you for visiting with me.  I hope this makes you feel even half as loved as it did me today.  What a bittersweet situation, but God is wonderful and there is a plan.


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Sin & Illness

This week in Sunday school we talked about Mark 1&2, the miracles that Christ performed.  We also talked about which miracles we would have liked to have been alive to see and why.  We covered some really awesome stuff, including something that I had never thought of before.  It seemed like SUCH a critical point to be made, and yet I'd overlooked it many times.  

What I learned is in the New Testament, in Mark 1:23-25:

23 And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out,

24Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God.

25And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him.
There are two things that strike me from these short verses.  One, that the unclean spirit is testifying that the man in front of him, who teaches in the synagogues as "one with authority, and not as the scribes" (Mark 1:22), is in fact, Jesus of Nazareth.  How odd that an unclean spirit would acknowledge the Savior in such a manor; that he would testify that this teacher is in fact, the Holy One of God.   

The second thing that blew me away was how Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit's testimony. Long have I remitted this simple, but profound truth.  The reason the Savior rejecting the unclean spirit's declaration of His divinity is because converting testimonies DO NOT come from Lucifer.  They DO NOT come from unclean spirits.  An evil entity CANNOT declare the good of something, yet cannot disregard the authority of the priesthood that Jesus Christ holds.  

Bam!  I love that!  It is so enlightening! 

Another thing I learned about miracles comes direction from the Bible Dictionary under the topic, Miracles.  “Miracles should not be regarded as deviations from the ordinary course of nature so much as manifestations of divine or spiritual power. Some lower law was in each case superseded by the action of a higher."  

This is also a piece of great knowledge that I have overlooked.  It's amazing & I love it.  A miracle doesn't mean that something unattainable happened in my life, it simply means that Heavenly Father, because I first acted in faith, somehow, is exercising His Power in my life.  That is heartwarming really.  Just think of all the miracles he is willing to enact in our lives if 
we only show a little more faith. 

The final thing I've been thinking about recently is also found throughout Mark chapters 1 & 2.  It's something that we didn't even get to discuss in Sunday school, but something that I can't put from my mind. In Mark 1 & 2, the Savior is continuously healing sickness & illnesses.  In Mark 2:5 Jesus heals the man with palsy:

5When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee. 
When He healed the man with palsy, He was deliberate in saying, "thy sins be forgiven thee."

Sin can be equated with illness.  This DOES NOT mean that I am saying all those who are sick have caused it by their own sins.  That IS NOT the case.  But, there are some illnesses that are cause by sin.  The real message of me equating sin with sickness has to do with repentance.  If we do not repent, must always have illness.  If Christ would not forgive us, our very existent is for naught.
I hope everyone is having a really awesome week.  Take some time out to help someone else, to call that old friend you've been meaning to.  Get on your knees and talk to your Heavenly Father, apologize & ask forgiveness for the things that you should.  He loves you, I promise. He has blessings He is waiting to give you, you only need ask.