Last week my family and I went to church camp. What a wonderful time! It was actually a youth church camp put on by the South Carolina Baptist Convention, but we all went along to help out.

The great thing about a youth camp is that it makes you see the world through younger eyes. And the greater thing is the shear energy. This camp, called Summersalt, was guided by great pastors and teachers, but also employed many young, college-aged counselors who worked with the middle-school and high-school kids. The counselors also led the worship and played the music. Their musical skills were absolutely amazing. They were, and are, tremendously gifted individuals.

There was a great worship song, that’s performed by the band ‘Unhindered,’ and is linked here.  It’s called ‘The Redeemed.’  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OyLrQCid1f4 

Another of the songs the camp band played is called ‘The Revelation Song,’ and is also performed by Kari Jobe. Here is a link to her in concert. It’s an amazing bit of music. The lyrics alone are full of some very deep theology.

If you have a minute, watch and listen. If you’re like me, you’ll probably do it over and over. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FObjd5wrgZ8

But music aside, I had a profound realization this week. Call it a revelation, in the spirit of the song linked above. See, I saw a camp full of young people. They came from all over South Carolina. Some were athletes, some musicians. Some were nerdy, some were Goth, some were rich, many poor. There were kids from great homes and kids from terrible homes. There were kids from the mountains (like ours) and kids from the coast. And here’s the great part: not one of them was different from any other in the eyes of God.

So what’s the revelation? Our emergency departments are full of people who are as different as those campers. They’re rich and poor, happy and sad, broken and successful (often both). Our patients are kind and angry, lawful and evil. And on some level, we often set ourselves in a place apart from the worst of them. Oh, we love to relate to the ones who pay their bills, read books, have educations and speak in gracious words about our care. And we love to be angry at the ones who are drunk, stoned, angry, profane, cruel, weak, lazy or criminal.

But the Bible is clear. God loves all of us exactly the same. Exactly. Not ‘doctors best, drunks less.’ Not ‘clean people with houses first, dirty people with shopping carts next.’ God could care less about our achievements, degrees, position, money or anything else except to the extent that we do them in his service, seeking our own calling, and in the accomplishment of his ends on earth and in eternity.

That drunk with the scalp laceration? God loves him. That guy in hand-cuffs? God loves him. The drug addict who makes you crazy? God loves him. The demented, mean old lady whose family wishes she’d go ahead and die? God loves her. The nutty girl who cuts and who loves to be in the ER? God loves her. And each one of them is loved exactly the same; more than human mind can conceive. Furthermore, not one of us, in our pristine lab-coats or scrubs, are loved on bit more than any of them.

That’s a revelation brothers and sisters! It helped me today, when I was on my knees putting an external jugular line in the neck of one of the world’s least compliant young diabetics. It helped me a while back, before camp even, when I was also on my knees doing the same to a heroin addict.

That’s a good place for us as doctors, as believers. On our knees, praying for and loving the people that God puts in front of us. Some of them make us pull out our already thinning hair. Some of them need to be told ‘no!’ Some of them need to go to jail; some of them require the rough compassion of honesty. But they are loved, cherished and desired by God every bit as much as we are.

See them that way and the ‘revelation’ may ‘revolutionize’ the way you see your patients, or friends, or co-workers. I hope you enjoy the song.
But before I close, let me link you to another song we heard all week at camp. It’s about love. The lyrics may leave you in tears, and may help you to realize what love, real love, is all about.. It’s by John MacMillan, and is called ‘How He loves me:’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xXowT4eJjY&feature=related

I’m not usually one for music or video links, but these are extremely moving and uplifting.  They touched me very deeply, so I wanted to share them with you, my friends.

Have a great day!

Edwin

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