CARES: Reflections for Nurses–English Only

CARES English Cover Only

I think the best way to share the good news is tstart with an insightful story.

Recently, I was in Taiwan and gave the CARES: Reflections for Nurses to a Taiwanese nursing student. He received his gift with joy and thanks. The next day, he approached me and said, “I can’t read this book, it is in Spanish.” This is when I explained how the book is bilingual–English on one side with Spanish on the other side. With the simple explanation, he went away happy excited to enjoy his gift.  A few days later, he confirmed his enjoyment of the English reflections.

This incidence solidified a thought I had been contemplating, to publish an English only edition. So here it is with a bonus feature. Instead of just removing the Spanish translations, I went one step further to add a note page for each reflection. This provides space for meditations, insights, and/or prayers.

page view

The book is available through Amazon Book Store

Hopefully soon, it will be available on the NCFI webpage as a free pdf.

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NCFI Cares: God’s Name in Nursing: Yahweh

Recently I completed a study on the Names of God and explored the various compound names of Yahweh. According to Wayne Grudem a Bible scholar and author of Systematic Theology shared how “the many names of God in Scripture provide additional revelation of His character. The multiple names are not mere titles assigned by people but, for the most part, God’s own descriptions of Himself.” In other words, God reveals himself to us through his name and characteristics. For example, most Christians are familiar with Yahweh or Jehovah. This is how God revealed himself to Moses “I AM who I AM” (Exodus 3:14). God also said “I am the God of your fathers, and the God of Abraham, God of Isaac and God of Jacob” (Exodus 3:15); revealing or reminding Moses of the covenant relationship found through his lineage.

The use of Yahweh, usually translated as all caps LORD in our English Bibles, speaks to an eternal, unchangeable intimate God.  Wow! The idea that God is eternal, unchangeable is beyond words. It means amidst our evolving health care systems with emerging technologies that God is the same. He is the same God when penicillin was discovered, is the same God today with cancer therapies and tomorrow with the threat of emerging infections. Not only is Yahweh unchanging and eternal, he is intimately acquainted with each one of us through our covenant relationship through Jesus Christ.

Imagine the hope and encouragement we can give our patients, families, and colleagues through sharing the meaning of God’s name—Yahweh. Look for a future NCFI Cares devotion on Yahweh Jireh.

Jesus said to them, “I tell you the solemn truth, before Abraham came into existence, I am!” (John 8:58)

Share how you live out the hope and reality of Yahweh!

NCFI Cares: Humility toward Men & Women

The Lord has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you. But to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8).

Thankfully, we need to look no further than to Jesus Christ to demonstrate how to “walk humbly with our God”. We readily think of the humble self-sacrifice Christ provided for our redemption (Philippians 2:5-11); additionally Jesus demonstrated his supreme love for mankind by humbly serving others. Andrew Murray’s Humility exclaims that our humility with God is demonstrated by loving our neighbor through sacrificial service to others:

“It is easy to think we humble ourselves before God: humility towards men will be the only sufficient proof that our humility before God is real; that humility has taken up its abode in us; and become our very nature; that we actually, like Christ, have made ourselves of no reputation.” (p. 12).

A perusal of Murray’s work on Humility reflects our Savior’s meek and lowly heart (Matthew 11:29) while revealing a few excellent tips:

-Pray for the Holy Spirit to wash us afresh with the humility of Christ.

-Explore new ways of honor others above ourselves in both home and work.

-Bear upon ourselves the failings and sins of fellow-Christians for the unity of peace

-Look upon every person as a child of God with honor and preference as an esteemed son of a King.

-Praise God most fervently when others are preferred and blessed

Finally, may we seek to live like the Apostle Paul in saying through both word and deed, “I am the least of all the saints”  (Ephesians 3:8).

 

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NCFI Cares: Celebrate Unity-a NCFI Values

ncfi-values-wordcloudOne of the coolest things about NCFI is the unified voice of Christian nursing. I am not saying everyone is in agreement, nor that there is never conflict. Disagreements are to be expected with any family, group or organization, especially considering the diversity of cultures, experience, education, and personalities NCFI represent.

What I am speaking more about is the unity of Christ manifested by the lack of individual denominations. In other words, the question “What denomination do you belong to?” or “Where do you go to church?” has never come up. I have attended 2 NCFI Congresses, International Board meetings, and various international conference calls and our focus has been on Christ-centered nursing.

We are all disciples, unique members of the body of Christ and unified for the same goal—equipping and encouraging Christian nurses to integrate Biblical principles and Christ centered values. Which, by the way, is our mission!

Ephesians 4:1-6 is a passage to anchor us to our purpose in NCFI:

“….I urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call—one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”

Let’s take the unity of Christ beyond NCFI and into our daily nursing practice–committed to focusing on commonalities instead of areas of dispute while preserving our unified faith through the dwelling Spirit.

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What does the Nicene Creed have to do with Christian Nursing?

What does faith in nursing have to do with the Nicene Creed? I say “a lot!” To better explain myself, I need to share with you my history with the Nicene Creed. If you have read  a previous blog posting on January 2013, you will see that Tove Giske asked me to contribute four Christian nursing articles for the Journal of Faith and Profession a journal published in Norway, 2012. While I was praying and thinking about the series of articles, I thought of the 4 essential concepts to Christian nursing: Faith, Compassion, Prayer and Excellence. These topics became the 4 articles with accompanying Bible studies. After their publication, I compiled the 4 together with international edits, etc to create  Our Faithful Journey in Nursing: A Teaching on Faith, Compassion, Prayer, and Excellence in Nursing (available as an eReader through Amazon).

It was while I was researching and writing the article on Faith, that I came across the Nicene Creed. My home church and denomination does not use any creed or written prayer as part of the liturgical service. I experienced the congregation reciting the creed as a statement of faith  when I attended other Christian services, like Catholic, etc.

Also, during this time around 2011-2012, I was researching and learning about the postmodern philosophy and culture exploding in the USA and other western societies. In a nut shell, postmodern philosophy denies absolutes, objectivity, and dogmatism to one of relativism, subjectivism, and tolerance. For Christians, who hold to a faith defined by Truth (big T–God) and obedience to rules, postmodern philosophy is in sharp contrast to our faith.

I have also been a student of world religions. I came from a Mormon back ground, explored various religions and philosophies during my ‘seeking’ years, as well as live and work in a melting pot of cultures, religions, and philosophies. All this to say, I seek to understand other people and their beliefs, as well as stay aware of how a simple interpretation of words in the Bible can be the basis for different religions and sects.

Okay… I admit I am getting long winded here, but the point is when you learn how various religions say who Jesus is and how that is different then Christianity, you become a life long student of the Nicene Creed. For example, Islam views Jesus as a prophet, etc.See  World Religion Chart for more information.

The Nicene Creed was written during a time (325 AD) when there was much dispute between the scholars and theologians about the Truth of Christianity. Who is God? Christ? Holy Spirit? What is salvation? and other BIG questions. Also, remember this was before the Bible or Scripture was available to everyone. The typical Christian went to church and memorized scripture, prayers, creeds, etc as a way to live their life and teach their family.

Okay…here is the point…The Nicene Creed is the basis of our Christian Faith and is a spiritual questionnaire of what each one of us truly believe. Here is the best online version I have found with scriptures supporting each statement Nicene Creed w/ Scripture .

So what does the Nicene Creed have to do with Faith in Nursing? Everything! stay tuned