These devotions are targeted specifically for you, the healthcare professional, and the challenges unique to you that you face on a day-to-day basis. You can sign-up here to receive these devotions through a weekly email or you can come back to this page to read the weekly devotion online. We hope you are encouraged and inspired by them, and that you can gain insight and wisdom from others who have gone through the same challenges that you face in the healthcare industry today.
"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him" (James 1:5, KJV).
“The soldiers also came up and mocked him. They offered him wine vinegar and said, ‘If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself’” (Luke 23:36, NIV 1984).
Each of us should have a few very special friends in our lives. Dr. Mark Johnston is one of those for me. I love this man, and God has done amazing things through his life, none of which I will mention here. He and I have been serving together in an Albanian mission for Christ over the last 25 years. Mark has been feeling the call of God into an even deeper walk with Him. Not long ago, Mark’s pastor asked his church members to place on the altar a sacrifice, to give to God something that God would truly desire. As Mark was praying earnestly what sacrificial offering might please his Lord, he clearly heard the inaudible message, “How about significance?”
“Whoever closes his ears to the cry of the poor will himself call out and not be answered” (Proverbs 21:13, ESV).
Last week my son-in law-called me with a new problem. He had sneezed vigorously, and, after that sneeze, had developed periorbital pain, swelling around his eye and a minor change in vision. My daughter sent me a text picture of his eyes with one pupil smaller than the other. I had no idea what was going on, but, as an oncologist, I had seen nasopharyngeal cancers looking just so.
“And he called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits…So they went out and proclaimed that people should repent…” (Mark 6:7-13, ESV).
Beni Baboçi often assists us with our medical evangelism work in the Balkans. He came to my home the other night and shared with me his early days of ministry. In those days he was part of a team that trudged from village to village in the rural mountains of Albania sharing the Jesus Film, accepted by some and rejected by others. As he spoke, I envisioned the disciples’ experience when Jesus first sent them out from village to village, two by two, preaching that people should repent.
“For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet” (Mark 5:4, NIV 1984).
I am trying again to memorize the book of Mark for no other reason than God asked me to do it. The beginning of chapter 5 drove my memory back to one Sunday afternoon, walking through the streets of the small Nigerian village of Sanubi, after we had attended church services. As we approached a concrete block house set off from the others, we came upon a young man, clearly mentally ill, sitting in the dirt with his feet locked by chains. He was talking delusionally, and it was not clear to me whether his chains were there to protect others or to protect him from himself.
“…For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ…that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead” (Philippians 3:8-11, ESV).
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith” (2 Timothy 4:7, NIV 1984).
I was visiting Ron today. I had been on the periphery of his medical care, but mostly he was my friend, stuck in his home with a stroke and a broken leg. After we had chatted awhile, I noticed a college diploma from Tusculum University and asked him where Tusculum was located.
“And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, ‘Follow me’” (Mark 2:14a, ESV).
Arnie was retired from his orthopedic practice and helping lead the retreat for Christian doctors. He did not know it would be he who would be changed. Based on Dallas Willard’s book Hearing God, the retreat speaker challenged his audience, “I want you each to take the next five minutes and just listen to the Lord in silence.” After three minutes of silent listening, Arnie heard God ask him in the silence, “How are you spending your time?” From that moment, Arnie’s life was rearranged.
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer…” (Philippians 4:6, NASB).
Paul married a girl I grew up with. They worked in Christian ministry together, and then he developed cancer and died. While he was living with cancer, Paul sent out an update to friends and supporters. Within that update he wrote, “A few weeks after finishing my radiation treatments a friend asked me what I had come to know about God through my ordeal. I had been wrestling with many thoughts that very day, and I realized that everything came down to one thing: I had to either believe God’s Word, the Bible, or not. I chose to believe. As a result, I understood in a new way that God is really sovereign and in control of my life and I am not.”
“He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned’” (Mark 16:15-16, NIV 1984).
“Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life” (1 Timothy 1:15-16, NIV 1984).
“The Lord God…breathed into his nostrils the breath of life…” (Genesis 2:7, NIV 1984).
I did not read Dr. David Stevens’ email until late that evening when I finished rounds. The morning email had asked for prayer for his grandson’s near drowning and critical condition.
Sometimes God “talks plain”—usually when our ears are stuffed with the wax of the world. In my own life, these plain-speaking times have not been pleasant. When God has had to “talk plain” in my life, it has been because I was headed in the wrong direction. His words were indeed clear, but they sounded like a two-by-four striking my skull.