Thursday, October 29

Sweet Dreams

Warning: this blog is completely random. But I had to share.

This morning when I woke up, I was thoroughly perplexed. I woke up from a dream in which I had returned to Tchad to visit. In my dream I was overwhelmingly joyed (is that a word?) at the prospect of being there, and I was just soaking it all in. It was nighttime in my dream and all the patients in the hospital were getting ready to go to sleep, and I was going to sleep there with them. So I went around to each patient and began talking to them, playing with the children a little. One small child of about 2 years old kept trying to escape and run out the door, so I kindly returned her to her parents and gently admonished her not to escape. Here's the really cool part of this whole dream: I was dreaming in French. I was speaking to them in French in my dream. How random is that?

Monday, October 26

Thoroughly Rebuked

This semester has been a challenging one in many ways, both related and unrelated to school. However, tonight as I was reading in Ministry of Healing for one of my classes, I was inspired and thoroughly rebuked by one particular chapter I read. I would highly recommend any and all of you to read it (entitled "Mind Cure"). Here are some quotes that really struck deep in my heart. If you don't have the time to read all of these quotes, or the chapter in Ministry of Healing, at least read the last quote.

For every trial, God has provided help. (Note the verb tense)

Song is a weapon that we can always use against discouragement.

We are not to let the future, with its hard problems, its unsatisfying prospects, make our hearts faint, our knees tremble, our hands hang down. "Let him take hold of My strength," says the Mighty One, "that he may make peace with Me; and he shall make peace with Me." Isaiah 27:5. Those who surrender their lives to His guidance and to His service will never be placed in a position for which He has not made provision.

In the way that leads to the City of God there are no difficulties which those who trust in Him may not overcome. There are no dangers which they may not escape. There is not a sorrow, not a grievance, not a human weakness, for which He has not provided a remedy.

We are not to dwell on the great power of Satan to overcome us. Often we give ourselves into his hands by talking of his power. Let us talk instead of the great power of God to bind up all our interests with His own. Tell of the matchless power of Christ, and speak of His glory.

If we are heaven-bound, how can we go as a band of mourners, groaning and complaining all along the way to our Father's house? (This quote in particular I felt to be a direct rebuke to myself. I have been overwhelmingly negative this semester, and I would like to ask each of my friends a favor-- that if you ever hear me complaining or being negative, please stop me, mid-sentence if necessary, and tell me to think of something to praise my God for.)

While words express thoughts, it is also true that thoughts follow words. If we would give more expression to our faith, rejoice more in the blessings that we know we have,-- the great mercy and love of God,-- we should have more faith and greater joy.

"In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." 1 Thessalonians 5:18. This command is an assurance that even the things which appear to be against us will work for our good. God would not bid us be thankful for that which would do us harm.

Thursday, October 15

Pygmalion Effect

A few weeks ago I had nursing clinicals at a high school in downtown Chattanooga. I, along with two other girls, was going to teach certain health topics to 9th and 10th graders in the JROTC program. My experience there was not at all what I had expected.

We taught to three different sections of students, all with the same retired naval officer for a teacher. The teacher was quite hospitable to us in his classroom, offering to do whatever he could to help us get set up. However, he also "helped" us by warning us about different kids and classes that we would be in charge of teaching.

"Oh, ya'll are talking about drugs and alcohol? You'll see one girl who's a fetal alcohol syndrome kid, and you'll see some crack babies too. See if you can guess who they are and then I'll tell you."

I was uncomfortable with him sharing this information, and rather irked that he would even mention something like that. What do I need to know that for? And why should it matter?

The day continued, speckled with these harsh comments and informatives.

"Aww, he don't know nothin' don't listen to him."

"Ya'll are talking about pills? Oh, he can tell you all about that."

And these were just the comments directed toward me and my fellow nursing classmates, to make no mention of the comments he directed towards his students, and all in plain hearing of the entire classroom.

By the end of the day, I could feel the anger inside me rising with each painful jab he made. I thought of those teens; most of them are faced with the same degrading, faithless remarks day after day after day from their family, their friends, and their teachers. Every day, it is impressed further upon their minds that they are worthless and will never amount to anything. And I couldn't help but think that I was sitting in the midst of a classroom full of nearly lost potential. I was seeing the Pygmalion effect in action. These students were living up to exactly what was expected of them-- nothing more and nothing less.

My fellow nursing classmates and I did our very best to treat them with the exact opposite attitude of their teacher. But that was just one day of their lives. I couldn't help but be saddened at the thought of the prospects of their lives if this cycle continues. And I pray that God intervenes to bring them out of the pits that Satan has dug them into.

But in thinking of all this, I was relieved to know that there is One who has full faith in each of our potentials. God expects great things of each of us, and I hope that we can each see the expectations that He has of us. Because in the end, the majority of people will be what they feel they are expected to be.

Sunday, October 4

High Time for an Insouciant Post

In our humble Poplar apartment, a silent, subtle battle is being waged-- The Battle of Arthur Mestat.

Upon entrance into our abode, I occasion to sense the cold chill and promptly persuade Arthur Mestat to my side. The temperature rises, and though slight in degree, the change is noticeable to me. I settle down, somewhat cozied and comforted at the thought of having won dear Arthur. Until my next leave of absence, in which the opposition regains Arthur Mestat's sway, and the crisp coolness settles over the apartment once more.

With the frost of autumn and winter fast approaching, it is to be hoped that soon this battle will be ended. It is to be hoped that soon Arthur Mestat will be permanently persuaded to remain faithful to my cause, and perhaps my opposition will see the light as well. This is my ambitious conquest for these autumn and winter seasons.