Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 5, 2014
- Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 5, 2014
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As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press, here is a selection from our book of daily devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's meditation. We hope you will be blessed. Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
A beloved nurse and her dusty Bible
"Beloved, we are God's children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is."
1 John 3:2a
I worked as a registered nurse (RN) for more than sixteen years before becoming an ordained minister. People often ask why I changed professions. Sometimes I will smilingly mention I emptied and cleaned bedpans for years until I read that Jesus washed feet instead of other body parts. That's when I asked for a new calling!
Competent nurses are in constant demand. This caring profession taught me how to look, listen, feel, assess, plan, and understand people, health, and wellness issues, sickness, death, and dying realities. I am a wiser person for all those years in the classrooms of numerous hospital wards and emergency rooms. Nursing has deeply influenced my under-standing and practice of pastoral care.
I worked as an RN while earning my Master of Divinity degree. Over the months, certain nursing floors began to specifically request me by name for shift work when the patient census increased, or nursing staff took vacation time or called in sick.
One nurse in particular seemed both fascinated and sarcastic about my studies. One evening she approached me with a surprising question. "Can you come over after work? I want to talk to you about something." "Of course," was my response. The shift was extremely busy that day. There was too much to do, and not enough hands to get the job done. With relief, I headed to the parking lot only to remember our scheduled meeting.
She greeted me with eagerness at the door. In the bedroom, she opened a cedar chest and began emptying it. A dusty Bible lay at the bottom. She unsuccessfully tried to blow off the thick layer of dust on its cover. Embarrassed, she wiped the Bible clean with her shirtsleeve.
To my utter amazement, she asked me to help her begin reading it. It had been years since she had opened her Bible and she didn't know where to begin. "Oh God," I inwardly prayed, "Help!" Slowly I opened the Bible to the letter (epistle) of 1 John, whom many believe was written by the disciple "whom Jesus loved" (John 13: 23). Beloved John was writing to his beloved friends in the church about his beloved Jesus. For some reason, it seemed important to read about belovedness. Quietly reading aloud, I began in chapter one until all five chapters were read. My nursing colleague quietly wept throughout the entire reading. "Thank you," she murmured. We have since gone our separate ways, but I remember her every time I read 1 John and come to the endearing name, "Beloved." I wonder how she is and pray for her. She is a dear child of God.
Let us live as the Beloved and blow the dust off our Bibles! Truly, as Mother Frances Dominica has said, "You will find the living God in the pages of the Bible. You will find him also just exactly where you are."
God, help us live as your beloved children. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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