Stability Comes from Christ
"What do you mean by asking me that? What is supposed to bother me?," I asked in a probing way, medical-fashion which was the start of our assessment with his mental status.
"Them! These deputies holding me down. I can't move. I'm not doing anything," was the quick reply, the pair of blue eyes would not try to meet at my level and kept his vision fixated on the wall across his face, avoiding to look at me. Same pupils that tried to stare with a blank look and trying to intimidate me. [It wasn't working! You won't scare me. I have Christ in me...I'm thinking to myself].
All of a sudden, he got more restless and was trying to elude the firm grasps on his head, his shoulders and his legs. He ended up lying face down on the floor, now the bodies of 3 deputies in one row, from his head down to his legs, their knees pressed firmly on the middle part of his body as a few extra ones were gathered around for extra back up if help would be needed to try to subdue this man, whose behavior wasn't making sense to any of us.
We asked if he was a heavy drinker [after taking all the vital signs and everything like blood pressure was not that bad, no fever, etc]. "Yes, I drink a lot!," was the quick reply.
Medical staff: "Everyday?"
Man: "no response"...then, started talking gibberish. "129, yes, 12...well, 129...whatever...It's impossible...It's impossible."
"That's it!," exclaimed the charge nurse last night. "We're sending him to the hospital to be evaluated." As she was saying that, other medical staff [including me] continued to assess his mental status. To our surprise, he was answering appropriately this time. He knew his name, he knew were he was and he knew what was going on. A minute later, he was bizarre, not answering questions, and was very emotionally labile. [I started thinking if it wasn't a psych issue, he was "possessed" like those kinds you'd see from scary movies. But I won't glorify that. I would rejoice knowing the Power that comes from the Lord. "By God's grace, I am what I am..." ].
Half an hour later, the sound of rushing 4 wheels of a guerney emerged to view as it passed the double metal door. 2 guys dressed up in blue uniforms, toting a heavy huge bag equipped with all emergency kits, halted and started asking the same man.
Wow! He was answering appropriately! He was calm and told them "No! I don't drink alcohol!" The emergency service were looking at our medical staff with that kind of "lost-look" in their eyes, asking quietly like "What's the problem then?" The deputies holding him down couldn't answer, as they witnessed, too his unusual behavior. Talking about a "yin-yang" behavior well presented.
What's the point of this story? The man acting confused, uncooperative and weird, then few minutes later, very well-oriented to place, name and time, cooperative and answering the paramedic's questions, shows how any man can be unstable in many ways. It's not the first nor the last incident:
"Most of the crowd spread their coats on the road ahead of Jesus, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. He was in the center of the procession, and the crowds all around Him were shouting, "Praise God for the Son of David! Bless the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Praise God in highest heaven!" [Matthew 21:8-9; Life Application Bible].
"The entire city of Jerusalem was stirred as he entered, "Who is this?" they asked. And the crowds replied, "It is Jesus, the prophet from the Nazareth in Galilee." [Matthew 21:10-11].
"Meanwhile, the leading priests and other leaders persuaded the crowds to ask for Barabbas to be released and for Jesus to be put to death. So, when the governor asked again, "Which of these two do you want me to release to you?", the crowd shouted back their reply, "Barabbas!" [Matthew 27:20-21].
"But if I release Barabbas, "Pilate asked them, "what should I do with Jesus who is called the Messiah?" And they all shouted, "Crucify him!" "Why?" Pilate demanded, "What crime has he committed?" But the crowd only roared the louder, "Crucify him!" [Matthew 27:22-23].
The crowd's rejoicing mentioned above marks the celebration of "Palm Sunday", which happened to be today, the 5th of April. It signified the first time Jesus entered Jerusalem and boldly declared Himself as King and the crowd gladly joined Him. Same people who would bow to political pressure and desert Him in just a few days, wanting Him to be crucified.. -[some from footnotes from Life Application Bible]. How unstable people's ways are!
What's the condition of our hearts? Can we truly and boldly declare our love and faith for our Lord Jesus Christ, even when faced with pressures of unbelief around us? How deep is our love for our Redeemer Who gave His own life to pay for our sins?
If faced with pressures of unbelief, can we boldly and loudly roar "Crucify! Yes! Crucify our sins on the cross!"
Yes, we are weak but it is His grace that will always sustain us to be on guard for this acclaim that we need to share with others who are still unstable in all ways.
Isaiah 25:9 -"This is the Lord , in Whom we trusted. Let us rejoice in the salvation He brings!"
Galatians 5:22 -"When the Holy Spirit controls our lives, He will produce this kind of fruit in us:love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control."
The Attacker (5/15/09)
The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies.
Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.
Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.
All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.
When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.
The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.
When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himseld and ended up injuring his attacker severely.
[Source: Life Application Bible]:
We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.
“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14
Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].
Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.
Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.
Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].