Aug 28, 2010

Not Drunk as You Suppose

This story was previously shared on Facebook, in a shorter version.

My patient was a middle aged man who lived in a house that reeked of garbage, beer and cigarette smoke. This morning it had one more odor; partly digested blood. There's nothing I like better that the smell of blood that's been vomited after being in the stomach for a while. He got up around three AM and began drinking. A short while later he began vomiting blood. His medical history was significant for emphysema, liver failure and alcohol dependence. To make it worse, the alcohol had eroded either his esophagus or stomach, until blood vessels tore open and began to bleed. My new friend was a mess.

We loaded him in the ambulance and began transport. I tried to make small talk but he had a grumpy disposition and was in a lot of pain. Most of his comments were profanities. I really felt badly for him. I wanted to see God touch him in some way and maybe even heal him. In my spirit, I cried out for mercy and compassion.

But I spoke not a word of it.

During the trip to the hospital he shoots me a look of amazement and suddenly says, "I feel really %$#@ weird." I asked what he meant by "weird".

He said, "I feel really high, like I'm stoned. But I never do drugs and it's not the booze. This is really %$#@ weird!" As I watched, he began to giggle and smirk in the most amusing way. I dropped him off at the hospital without elaborating on what I'm sharing with you.

I'm a little embarrassed to discuss what I think happened to him.

I'm a recovering pharisee. This is my treatment program. After God knocked the atheist out of me, he had to deliver me from a religious mindset that was offended by people getting drunk in the spirit. I have to admit, I'm still a little uncomfortable at times. The night before all this transpired some of my more charismatic friends (OK, hooligans) came to my house and God proceeded to get us whacked in the Holy Ghost. People were laughing and falling on floor in the joy of the Lord. It was a great time and I'll always remember that night fondly. But when my patient began to get giddy and happy, I realized it was God giving him a dose of the new wine.

Where do I go with this and what does it mean?

I think it's safe to say that God loves everyone. Even mean old drunks. He loves us all and He wants us to be filled with life, health and joy. And He's willing to go to extreme measures to do it...even getting someone drunk in the spirit in the back of an ambulance.

The eternal One heard an unspoken plea that mercy and joy be extended to a miserable man. And He gladly granted the request.

That's my story and I'm stickin' to it.

(You might pray for him to be healed if you have a few minutes)