I stood beside her high tech hospital bed gazing bleary eyed at the latest in monitoring devises. Fumbling with the IV tubes, I tried to make sense of it all. Iridescent green halos highlighted her withering frame as beeps and blips of data scrolled endlessly. Technology that could only record the inevitable decline of her life leaving useless stacks of data that could do little to revive her.
Why had I become a doctor?
Sitting in lecture after lecture I thought being armed with the latest medical advances and the power of the Holy Spirit, God would allow me to conquer illness. Hadn’t the Scriptures promised we would do even greater thing in the earth than Jesus had when He walked on good ole terra firma?
Ha! What an idealistic fool I had been!
Nothing was greater than God’s physical presence on the earth. When He walked the planet demons fled and diseases scattered, the dead rose and true victory cornered the small Middle Eastern soil for three quick years.
Sure, there had been pockets of revival and divine healings periodically recorded in newspaper headlines and theological history books over the last 2,000 years, but nothing really significant. Nothing had been recorded to parallel Jesus’ time on the earth.
“Bee--------e-----e---------p.” The flat line warning interrupted my rambling thoughts.
The room erupted into trained response. Crash carts, nurses, technicians and bolts of electricity danced expertly over my patient.
Mechanically, without any feeling or awareness, I robotically performed all the necessary procedures to reverse death and restore life. For a brief second I felt detached from the experience and somehow all this activity was a dream and I was the innocent bystander simply observing the ritual with feign interest.
“We’re losing her!” Snapped the E.M.T.
The frantic flurry of activity blurred before me. Time slowed. Everyone seemed to float effortlessly through their performance.
“Time of death one-fifty-two p.m.,” recorded the R.N.
“Was she listed as an organ donor?”
“Don’t know, gotta look at her charts,” answered another professional. “If not, we’ll have to ask the parents if they’d consider it.”
I turned and looked out the glass divide separating the patient from the anxious parents. I saw by the looks on their faces they knew. They understood their baby girl was gone.
The father was the first to give way to the impact. Huge tears rolled down his beard stubble as the sobs rocked his strong torso. His petite wife seemed to tower before him and she gathered him in her comforting arms.
What could I say that they would want to hear?
Walking from the room I approached them. Gaining composure I rattled off useless facts to somehow justify to these shattered lives that what had happened was somehow acceptable. Methodically I fed them the line about organ donation and numbly they agreed resigned to the fact that their loss might bring someone else hope. I offered an anemic hug and walked away leaving the impression I had to attend to other matters.
That’s a laugh! What other matters could be more important?
Pressing the elevator button I stepped back and waited. The doors sighed opened. Riding downward to the main lobby floor I felt bile rise in my throat as the bleeping light indicated each descending floor.
The opened and I steadied myself. Incoming passengers stepped aside for me. I don’t know if it was because I was a physician or my greenish skin cast.
Picking up the pace my Crocs padded silently on the carpeted hallway. Turning through the maze of hallways I found it. Stopping at the door I sighed heavily. Bracing myself, I pushed opened the door. It was empty.
I reverently tip toed into the small hospital chapel. Relieved to be alone I collapsed onto the small padded pew. In the stillness I felt the rivulets of tears burning their way down my cheeks. I could withstand the onslaught no longer. I crumbled onto the back of the facing pew and sobbed uncontrollably.
“Why, God why?” my spirit cried out in panged anguish.
I was suddenly shocked into the present by the touch of a small hand on my shoulder.
“May we sit with you?” asked the soft voice.
Searching through tear-streaked eyes, I met the parent’s grief-stricken faces.
Sliding over to make room for them on the pew, they joined me in the battle for belief.
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