The lost coin. A woman loses one of her ten coins. She lights a lamp, sweeps her entire house, and searches until she finds it. She calls all her neighbors and friends to rejoice as she has found the one coin.
The lost son. A son squanders his inheritance in wild living and hits rock bottom. He returns home with a sorrowful heart, willing to be a servant in the house of his father. Instead, his father runs to meet him and calls for a huge celebration in honor of his son's return, for his son was once lost, but now is found!
In Luke 15, Jesus tells a series of parables about things that are lost and the drastic measures that surround them being found. I have read these passages countless times and even use them here in the Philippines to explain salvation to the people we minister to. But once again, I found myself reading this chapter in a study I am doing on the life of Christ.
It wasn't until this past Saturday that the Lord began to teach me even more about lostness.
I was having a hangout day here at the house--some friends were over and we were working on some decorations for an upcoming wedding. We had lunch, I worked on my assignment, straightened up my desk a bit, all cooked dinner, and watched a movie. Towards the end of the night, I realized that my watch wasn't on my wrist. I looked around me, thinking I must have taken it off when we were cooking or after I had washed my hands. No watch in sight.
Now most people wouldn't freak out about misplacing their watch (not that I was completely freaking out), but I never take it off so I was wondering where it could have gone. I began to notice myself subconsciously looking at my wrist to check the time. I did it like 10 times that hour, realizing each time that it wasn't there. I thought about how I use it to check the date to write on patient's charts, to note the number of heart beats in a minute, and to check respirations of a newborn. It is a simple thing, but pretty important.
So after our movie, I really began to look everywhere for it, retracing my steps all day. I went outside, I checked in the kitchen and the bathroom, all over my desk. Everywhere. My housemates helped too, but we couldn't find it. I told my roommate when she got home from shift about losing it and she helped search, too. I was searching in my closet in my room when I was stopped abruptly as I remembered those "lost" passages in Luke 15 that I had read before. WOAH. reality check. I was just like that woman who turned her house upside down for her one lost coin.
Then it all began to come together, as God reminded me of all the lost people in this world, who don't know of his saving grace and gift of eternal life. I began to feel quite silly for searching like a crazy person for a petty watch. I was challenged. Am I bound and determined to search for those who are lost until they are found? Am I willing to disrupt my life, leave everything behind, and find them?
I was pretty determined to find my watch--will I be committed to look with that same vigor and ambition?
I have really been praying for opportunities to minister to the women here and verbally share the gospel. I know the doors are wide open, and I don't want to miss the opportunity. For now, I am still learning how to administer good care and really how to communicate effectively in the language. I know I am still in a beginning stage and haven't had the chance to have my own patients and build those relationships. But the time is coming quickly where that will change. So I am praying now that I can be prepared and ready to share--to seek out those who are lost--to give physical care, but not neglect the more important spiritual care. I covet your prayers too, and find in God's word the plea of Paul to the church in Ephesus as similar to mine:
Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that
I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an
ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.
Below are some pictures of me with baby Khent Dave. He was born on Sunday, October 14, 2012 at 3:06pm. I was able to admit his mother, walk with her through her (very short) labor, be there to assist in the birth, and take care of her and her baby all through postpartum until they were discharged. I was really blessed to learn a lot from her labor and delivery. It was the first time a patient kinda felt like 'my own.' Hope you enjoy!
|Baby Kent Dave|
|Doing his newborn exam.|
|He was a sleepy baby, but so good and cooperative.|
|The first time the board had my initials (BB) on it!|
|Erasing the patient's info after I discharged the mom and her new baby to go home.|
PS--I did find my watch, in the bottom of my backpack. And just like the people in the parables, there was great rejoicing at its return to my wrist! ;)