Tender Care for the Hurting

Six hundred forty miles separated me from my parents. It’s hard to get an accurate picture of the real situation from that far away. The winter before, my father had been put on life support but made a miraculous recovery. Each day was a gift. I listened carefully to the description of symptoms. After the phone call with my mother ended, I immediately dialed a nurse friend. She said, “I believe you should drop what you are doing and make a trip to Illinois to be with your family.” I will always be grateful for that timely advice.

My father was immediately put on hospice. Nurse friends from the local hospital sent him a care basket. How blessed we were by the ministry of nurses who came in and out of the home to care for him. A few days after Christmas, I remember dialing a phone with trembling hands late one night. I whispered, “My father cannot breathe because of the pain. What should we do?” The nurse calmly walked us through the medicine to administer. She stayed on the phone until I was confident in what to do. His pain became manageable and his breathing steadied.

A few days later a nurse compassionately walked us through the options when we could no longer lift Dad or care for his needs. She arranged for an ambulance and respite in a hospice in-patient facility. Nurses greeted us tenderly and answered all our questions. We had no idea it would be his last night with us.

In May, we celebrate National Nurses Week. What a noble profession to care for those who are sick, in pain, weak, and despairing. The nurses I know exhibit selfless service and focused dedication. Their touch can bring reassurance and comfort.

To say “thank you” to a nurse you may know this month, offer to pay his or her membership to Baptist Nursing Fellowship (BNF). The organization is designed to help health-care professionals utilize their talents to fulfill their desires to serve God alongside other people.

Baptist Nursing Fellowship provides Christian professional fellowship; promotes continuing education and growth for members and nurse missionaries; and encourages nursing service evolving from a personal commitment to Jesus Christ. For information about how to join Baptist Nursing Fellowship or start a BNF group, visit wmu.com/bnf. Make plans to attend or send a nurse friend to the 2018 BNF Annual Meeting, September 7–9, at Shocco Springs Baptist Conference Center in Talladega, Alabama.


Father,

You are the great Physician. Thank You for health-care providers who assist in Your divine work as they tenderly care for the medical needs of those who are hurting. Give them strength, wisdom, patience, and courage. May Your love and light shine in them today. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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