Recently, you may have heard about the tragic shootings in my hometown of Chattanooga, TN, where we lost some brave men.(http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/local/story/2015/jul/22/fighting-our-fighters-erlanger-traumteam-call/315834/) It has shook the whole city. I work at the hospital that these victims were taken. I was not directly involved with any of the victims, but very well could have been with just a little change in timing. I do know the nurses and doctors and surgical techs who were involved. They are friends, mentors, teachers, and team members. I want you to know I am proud of my team members. They deserve to be recognized. We are at a level one trauma center, so I believe every day they deserved to be thanked. Not to downplay the merit deserved in handling of recent events, but we do see our share of “traumas”. We see a great deal of shootings and stabbings, often gang related. We see head injuries, motor vehicle crashes and a fair amount of work related or alcohol related issues. My hospital works just as hard for these cases. I am thankful to be a part of a community that takes value in all their patients’ lives, even the ones who do not always deserve it. That being said, who are we to judge whether someone deserves to live or not? Our job is to save lives, not question the merits deserved.
“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged. And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye. ” Matthew 7: 1-5
However unjust it may seem at times, every person has value in God’s eyes. Even the drunkards, murderers, even those who seem to be our enemy. We live in a fallen world with fallen people all around us, including ourselves. So much so, that even when good people get the merit they deserve, there are still those in the background muttering complaints and gripes. “I work hard every day; I deserve to be recognized too” Why aren’t we recognized like this for every “traumatic” case? Those are some of the complaints I have heard. Mostly things said have been good, but statements like that make me sad. Why can’t we just be happy for those who deserve recognition, for any reason? Their complaints are correct, they should be recognized and thanked, but let us not allow bitterness to hinder us when our own team members and friends are recognized. Be happy for those in the moment and pray that we never have that kind of need to be recognized again. I don’t want to be recognized, for that only means that more grief and tragedy has come our way. So as you are praying for our city and country, do remember to thank those who had to immediately respond to the events, for it took a whole community, not just the people you see on the media. It took a whole community, from the highest in command to the lowest paying assistants. Remember that God values every life. I know He is grieving with us, for He is a just and merciful God. My heart breaks for the families of those fallen heroes, and it breaks for the people who worked tirelessly around the clock to save lives to no avail in this circumstance. But although the loss of lives is a failure, it is not the ultimate failure. God does bring good to all situations. In our situation, it has brought a community together, if for but a brief few weeks. We can’t always see the end, but there is One who can. And he has given us grace and value by breathing life into us.
“If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important. Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. For we are each responsible for our own conduct.” “So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Therefore, whenever we have opportunity, we should do good to everyone-especially to those in the family of faith.” Galatians 6:3-5; 9-10
Thank you for reading, and thank you for praying! Please share if you feel led to do so!