When I reflect on whether if I have ever questioned my faith in healthcare, I want to say I have because healthcare is devastating at times isn’t it?! There are absolutely joyous moments but when the down times come, they come hard! I saw young patients who would probably never walk again or talk properly again. Families broken apart due to drug abuse and alcohol. So in those times, you would think it would be natural to question your faith – question where is God in the midst of all the suffering and death.
However this is the honest answer – I never had a moment when I doubted my belief in God. Yes, things were hard at times and I saw some upsetting moments but my outlook amidst those moments was an outlook of hope for the future.
I remember the first time I saw a dead body – you don’t forget something like that. My very first nursing placement. (If you’ve read my previous posts you’ll realised I experienced a lot my first nursing placement lol). I had come onto the day shift and a patient I was looking after the previous day had died overnight. I was shocked the patient had deteriorated so quickly overnight as the patient was stable when I had left the day before. As my mentor and I prepared the body to be taken away, all I could think about “wow – this is actually a dead body in front of me.” But this was someone’s grandma, sister, mother, friend. But in light of what I believe about eternity, I saw it as only just the beginning. I wasn’t sad, confused, devastated and angry at God, but I was in admiration of the layers of life God had fashioned.
When you work in healthcare, resilience is something that is much needed. It is the ability and capacity to recover quickly from tough situations. It doesn’t mean compartmentalising and sweeping things under the carpet but dealing with tough moments in an affirming and positive way; (I will talk more about resilience in another post as this is something I really struggled with and still do at times).
There were many moments where I had to work on my resilience during my clinical time and I don’t think I could’ve done this without relying on God. Everybody has their own coping mechanisms; at times I did use Netflix, food or venting to friends about that horrible shift I had.
However it always felt like I wasn’t actually dealing with the difficulties. So what actually allowed me to have that attitude of getting on and with it, was prayer and relying on God’s promises. This enabled me to rise above what was happening on earth and think of the bigger picture, what is called being heavenly minded.
Great is thy faithfulness.
For every down moment I had, I have double the amount of joy. The miracles I saw, healing throughout people’s bodies. Healing in families being brought closer together. The intricacies of the human body, the skillsets of the many healthcare professionals coming together to save someone’s life. I was in awe of it all – I couldn’t help but think thank you Jesus!
Throughout university and working clinically and even now, studying to be a Physician Associate, I’am of the full belief that I couldn’t and cannot do it without the grace of God.
“It is not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit says the Lord Almighty.”(Zechariah 4:6)
I have passed exams, gained favour in clinical placements and more but this is not by my sheer human effort. I have worked hard and done my part but the perseverance to carry on in those hard times, the strength to continue despite working with difficult staff, the faith to be hopeful in the promise that His compassions never fail, they are new every morning, (Lamentations 3:22) was by resting in someone higher than me – Jesus, my saviour.
The faithful love of the Lord never ends!Lamentations 3:22-24
His mercies never cease.
23 Great is his faithfulness;
his mercies begin afresh each morning.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance;
therefore, I will hope in him!”
So again, did I ever question my belief in God? No – in fact healthcare solidified my belief even more.