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“Adopt the same attitude as that of Christ Jesus”—Philippians 2:5 (CSB).
Overwhelmed describes the feelings I was experiencing on the day of my pre-op appointments last week. Preparing for my left knee-replacement surgery on March 24, my schedule included the following: a visit with the physician’s assistant, an anesthesiologist, and an RN; a blood draw, an EKG, a COVID test, a CT scan, and paperwork—lots of paperwork. I took notes to remember all of the do’s and don’ts connected to my upcoming surgery.
My appointment times, according to the scheduler, should have taken no more than two hours. Instead, because of various delays, including computer issues and an influx of other patients scheduled for different surgeries, I walked out of the facility over four hours later.
I was tired from sitting and waiting. However, my attitude reflected the person Jesus had changed from the inside out, beginning almost 20 years ago. Inpatient, some might have complained. I’ve learned in most situations like this, complaining doesn’t do any good. Could the staff have anticipated the delays caused by technology or a day filled with patients also needing pre-op attention? The facility, a large hospital, is used by many doctors from different offices, and who will be performing different procedures.
A Gracious Attitude
I was grateful that day for the doctors and nurses, who apologized for the delays over which they had no control. Concern for their patients, and the unexpected delays, revealed their caring hearts.
At my final appointment, the CT technician apologized for yet another delay. They were waiting on a computer tech to figure out the machine’s malfunctioning issues. I was embarrassed, however, when my stomach growled as we talked. I’d been there since 10:30 and missed lunch.
Hearing the rumble coming from my stomach, the CT technician asked if I were hungry. I was. Checking the snack room, he returned with a cold drink and a package of cookies.
Just Like Jesus
Waiting to be called for my final appointment, I contemplated the gracious staff members. Each had reflected a Christ-like attitude, one even offering me food. Isn’t that what Jesus did?
Jesus was a healer of people—physically, emotionally, mentally, and more importantly, spiritually. He even cared about their growling stomachs. Remember the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000?
Jesus was exhausted. People followed Him from town-to-town to seek healing and to hear Him preach. Even when Jesus tried to escape so He could rest and spend quiet time with His Heavenly Father, they found Him. But, Jesus, our precious Savior and Lord, was compassionate.
A Compassionate Attitude
Jesus knew the crowds had physical needs. Many had been following Him for a long time. But He also knew they had an even greater need—they were spiritually starving. The people following Him had empty hearts, but they didn’t know it.
The feeding of the 5,000 was an opportunity for Jesus to declare who He was. In addition, Jesus saw it as an opportunity to strengthen and shape His disciples’ faith. It’s a great reminder for us to see others through His eyes, always on the lookout for opportunities to care physically and spiritually for those who cross our paths.
Pastor and author Max Lucado reminds us that as God’s people we should be imitating Jesus. He says, “For years I thought my assignment or the Church’s assignment was to articulate the Gospel and nothing more. Now I believe that if we don’t support the verbal expression of the Gospel with physical demonstration of compassion, we are not imitating Jesus.”
After a 30-year teaching career, Carol Round found redirection as a Christian columnist, author and inspirational speaker. She is the author of nine books, all available at Amazon.com. (See her website at www.carolaround.com for more information.) When she isn’t writing, she can be found spending time with her seven grandchildren, working in her yard, volunteering, shooting photos, hiking, going on mission trips and playing with her spoiled rotten dog, Harley.