If you ask my mother about my care in the hospital her eyes still roll a little and she’ll probably say, “I didn’t like that ICU Nurse, Bob.” If you know my mother, you’ll know that she is a very agreeable woman and you must assume that something terrible happened in order for her to not like Bob.
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Well, what happened is that she and the rest of my family (with the exception of my wife) got kicked out of my ICU room. Her ‘little boy’ was in ICU and she got kicked out by a nurse. That was all my mother needed to instantly not like Bob. You might ask, “What happened for them to get kicked out?!?” “Were there too many people in the room?” No, they just came in two at a time. “Did your father act inappropriately?” Surprisingly, no. “Was your mother too emotional?” nope. …well, you get the point. They did nothing wrong. It was me. I got them kicked out. It’s amazing that even in a drugged up, post-op stupor I could cause my family trouble.
You see, I started running the room. My type A personality kicked in and I was instructing everyone about what to do. “Fluff my pillow,” “no, move that pillow,” “move to this side,” “get me ice chips.” I could barely speak, but I could still direct, apparently! The way my wife describes it, I must have been the worst patient ever! EVER. Nurse Bob was actually awesome. He went above and beyond and looked at my needs. He knew that I needed to rest and realized that I simply wouldn’t until he cleared out my family, so he made sure it happened.
I was thinking that some of us tend to do this, not just with a hospital room, but people like me tend to do this with our lives. People like me (you know who you are, don’t duck away from that computer screen) think that we can control things, but sometimes trying to control the things around us…sometimes trying to bring order, actually gets in the way of our own happiness and gets in the way of what we really need.
This probably sounds a little cliché, but I think God is, in this way, like Bob. God has a way of looking at us from a different angle and trying to provide what we need, so that we can be healed or fulfilled. You getting me?
We can get so busy trying to get what we want, that we totally miss what we need. I think many people put careers, money and prominence before the things that really matter. I remember the stress of picking a major as I went off to college. I was trying to manage my life and trying to prepare for: being married, having 1 1/2 kids, a dog, and a white picket fence. Oh, and I can’t forget that I wanted to be very well paid. What I didn’t realize is that I was making a mess out of my life those first couple years of college. I needed someone to clear the room and help me relax so that destiny would find me.
Finally the room got cleared and I realized that I was being called to ministry. It meant sacrifice, it meant letting go of some control (I’m still learning that part), but it also meant fulfillment and happiness.
Take a look at your own life. Are you trying to control it or are you living it? Are you focused on what you want, or will you let go and be called by God to what you need?