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How to Share with Patients in Despair

September 3, 2019
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How to Share with Patients in Despair

by Jennifer Wade, DDS


I have a handful of patients every month who mention all the pain and brokenness around them when asked what prayer requests they have. Sometimes it’s directly in their lives, and sometimes they are just overwhelmed by all the hopeless stories on the news and the anger people have at each other over different things. Before praying for them I usually say something to the effect of, “Yes, this world is broken, and that’s why we need Jesus.” That’s true, but recently I’ve been reading through Psalms and realized I could be using Scripture more powerfully to re-enforce that truth.


Let’s be honest, yes, things seem very hostile in our country and around the world, but they’ve always been that way. You only have to skim the Old Testament or history books to find horrific stories of how humans behave and treat each other and God. So we need to draw ourselves and others back to the Prince of Peace and His Word. The Psalms are jam-packed with hope-filled verses, and here are just a few you can share with patients in despair over the state of life:


“I sought the Lord, and he answered me; He delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame. This poor man called, and the Lord heard him; he saved him out of his troubles” (Psalm 34:4-6, NIV 1984).


“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him” (Psalm 34:8, NIV 1984).


“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18, NIV 1984).


“Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men, for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things” (Psalm 107:8-9, NIV 1984).


“He brought them out of darkness and the deepest gloom and broke away their chains” (Psalm 107:14, NIV 1984).


“Whoever is wise, let him heed these things and consider the great love of the Lord” (Psalm 107:43, NIV 1984).


Maybe you can think of other verses that better communicate these truths. Either way, I challenge both you and myself to have these verses memorized and written down so we can share them with those who have lost hope and think there’s no way things could get better. We are made by a God who is perfect and holy, and for those who believe in Him, we must remember that our hope is in Him and Him alone, and nothing in this world—no matter how horrible it is—can overcome our hope in the Lord.

Jennifer Wade, DDS

About Jennifer Wade, DDS

Jennifer Wade, DDS, is a general dentist at Christ Community Health Services in Memphis, TN. She is also one of the first graduates from the CMDA Dental Residency program. The CMDA Dental Residency Plus, or The [+] Program for short, is preparing a generation of dental disciples to go throughout the United States and the World providing high quality dental care to the poor in the name of Jesus. Jennifer stays busy by also being faculty for the [+] program, taking care of her husband and two children, and occasionally enjoying time to paint and bake.


  1. Avatar Greg Moody, DMD on September 5, 2019 at 12:31 pm

    thank you for this!

  2. Avatar Dr. Bill Griffin on September 5, 2019 at 3:34 pm

    Jennifer, I appreciate you giving us an eternal perspective on the temporal pain we encounter in our patients’ lives. May the Lord use us as His instruments to communicate His peace (John 14:27) and His comfort (2 Cor 1:3-5)!

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