Sometimes I feel disconnected from God when I spend time at home. He's become a steady and constant companion with me on the ambulance. I know He's always with me, it just seems like He's more with me when I see His power and love at work. I've seen more of that lately and I love it. I want to share with you some of the entries from my journal to give you an idea of how God makes his presence known to me at work.
I'm beginning a 36 hour shift. Due to some poor planning on my part I ended up working more than I wanted to this weekend. As we drove to a call my partner told me he was getting a very bad headache. He got out the bottle of Advil and took a couple. As I drove, I asked if I could pray for him to be healed. He said, sure. I put my right hand on his shoulder, and kept the other one on the steering wheel. I commanded the pain to leave. Before he had the bottle of Advil put away his headache was completely gone. We were both stunned. It was the first time I'd seen a healing that fast when praying for someone by myself.
I prayed for a man in his 70's with congestive heart failure and numerous other problems related to it. He was a very nice man with a great sense of humor. We talked and joked a lot during the transport. I saw his frustration over the medical conditions he'd been having and asked if he wanted them gone. He said, yes. I asked if I could pray for all of his health problems to be healed. He was very happy to have me pray. It was a busy day and a long, sleepless night. I didn't get to pray for anyone else. I sensed most of the people I saw were not interested. I got 1 hour of sleep between 4 and 5am.
On day 2, I got to pray for an elderly woman who fell out of bed and suffered a broken bone in her neck (C-2), a broken clavicle and a subdural hematoma. It was a short transport - I don't know if she was healed. She was a sweet woman. The patient, her daughter and I all prayed together in the ambulance.
I love it when church breaks out at work!
I love it when church breaks out at work!
We transported a young woman, in her 20's with a cerebral venous thrombosis. I gave her some encouraging words after I prayed with her. Although she was frightened, she felt a lot better after we prayed and she thanked me. We transported another woman in her 40's who had a stroke with right-sided paralysis. She had no prior health problems until this event. She was scared and frustrated. I opened up a friendly dialog and asked her if I could pray for her. I sensed she didn't know much about God, but she was eager to try anything now. Again, she was noticeably happier after we prayed and thanked me. I didn't see any evidence that either of these women were immediately healed, though in time they might be.
I also prayed for an employee of a local hospital. She’s a paramedic working as an ER tech. We arrived early for a transport so my partner and I went to the break room and watched the football game. The ER tech and I talked about our past experiences in EMS. This being our first conversation, I tried to build a bridge of trust with her. I sensed God was up to something but I didn't know what it was. A friend of mine taught me that ministry (the ability to use our gifts) flows through relationships. When it was time to get the patient, we walked to the ER when she suddenly developed severe left knee pain. I asked if she'd ever had it before. She said no. She sometimes has pain in the other knee but never had pain in this one. I asked permission to pray for her and when she said yes, I placed my hand on her knee and prayed quickly. I basically commanded the pain to leave. She said she didn't feel anything. I told her it might take a little while. A few minutes later she said the pain was completely gone.
The following day We transported a man who has esophageal cancer. It partially occluded his airway and he came in to the ER by ambulance. Before we got to him my partner was approached in the parking lot by a man whose wife lost their baby last night – it was still born. He was looking for answers and my partner was at a loss for words, so he asked me to help out. I listened to the man tell me about the delivery and his emotions afterward. When he was done I told him about the death of David’s son and the fact that David knew he would go to be with him one day. This made the guy so happy he began to cry with joy and he hugged me tightly and thanked me. He said he hasn’t ever prayed much but last night he did a lot of praying and seeking God. I think he’s going to see God's purposes more in days to come.
I talked with the patient who had cancer during the transport. He was close to God years ago, but drifted away more in recent years. I listened to him and then let him rest for most of the 45 minute trip. I prayed for his healing while he rested. I don't know if he was healed. After dropping him off and giving report I prayed for his sister who has arthritis and sciatic nerve pain in her right leg.
Day 4 - I had some appointments today while I was on duty. I went to the first meeting to pray for a woman I've known for years. I had a legitimate reason to talk to her, but the main reason in my mind was to get a chance to pray for her to be healed. I had vision 3 months ago about her. In the vision, God told me she had tendonitis. I asked her about it a few weeks ago. She told me she has arthritis in both her knees and tendinitis in one of them - which required surgery last spring. She's been in a lot of pain this summer. On the way to meet her, I met another person who works in the office. She was limping because of a bone spur on her heel. I prayed for her to be healed. I finally got a chance to pray for the woman with arthritis and tendonitis. I was a little surprised because she was very open to it. I don't know why, but I still expect people to be reluctant - even after God shows me what He wants to do. I've never found much resistance when I follow His lead.
With the exception of the last case, in which I had a vision, I didn't receive any information in advance for anyone I prayed for this weekend. I've leaned heavily on words of knowledge in the past. It's almost become a crutch. It was cool watching God heal people as I simply went forward in faith where people obviously needed healing.
I've gotten out of my comfort zone at home lately. I once went on 'treasure hunts' each time I went out to a place of business. I prayed for people all the time at the grocery store. I don't do it as much as I once did. That needs to change. It's the only way I'm going to see God moving both at work and at home. There are people all around me everywhere I go who need and want to be healed. After the things I saw this weekend, I'm very encouraged and excited to pray for people. It's been a long time coming.
My wife and I are going to the 'Spiritual Hunger Conference' this week for our anniversary. We're entering a time of unprecedented global changes. It's a critical time to be hearing what God is saying. I can't think of a better place to be. We are both looking for some healing, too. We both suffer from chronic neck pain and other nagging problems. Don't ask me to explain how that works. We watch others healed, and still have problems of our own that aren't healed. Maybe I'll write about it in a future post. I'm looking forward to seeing what God has in store for us at the conference. I'll keep you posted.