Sitting on one of the chairs used for sick calls, a young male was holding on to his upset stomach. With our medical secretary nearby, to interpret for both of us [between Spanish and English], he complained of not being able to keep his food down.
He was just incarcerated the day before. But he failed to inform the Intake Nurse [admitting nurse] that he had a habit of using massive doses of methamphetamines daily. So, he started going through some withdrawal symptoms that day. When night time came, he couldn’t stand it any longer and had requested to be seen by the medical staff.
All day, he wasn’t able to eat as he had been throwing up and had been going to the bathroom, afflicted with bouts of diarrhea. His vital signs fortunately were normal, except for his rapid pulse. My concern was that he was prone to being dehydrated because of his nausea and vomiting coupled with his diarrhea. And him, not being able to eat nor drink, the lost fluids were not replenished.
Night shift nurses were there to only see inmates with emergency kind of illnesses. His was not that of emergent but because of problems with dehydration, I told the charge nurse, I would go and treat the said inmate.
“Why are you seeing him?”, grumbled the deputy who needed to guard me as I treated the inmate. “So what if he’s withdrawing? Mother____!” “You use drugs and then, you come here to the jail and keep complaining. A-----!” “You need to throw up, then throw up! Jesus!”
I wasn’t saying anything. I knew in my heart that anyone who hasn’t fully accepted the Lord’s love would have the tendency to talk like that. And if that deputy is a Christian, that just showed how much we are in need still of God's grace and knowledge every day, to help our minds be renewed, our hearts transformed to His likeness.
As my emotions were building up, I asked the Lord for His wisdom in this situation that slapped my face. Immediately, I felt calm and sealed my mouth and felt I didn't need to speak until there would be a better opportunity to speak back, but not in the manner that would displease the Lord.
While getting the appropriate medications to relieve the inmate’s upset stomach, one LVN walked in as I was washing my hands and said sarcastically, “Well, the deputy wanted me to tell you for you to give TLC to that inmate.”
"This is it! This is the opportunity that the Lord whispered to my ears..."
Loudly, I responded, “Isn’t that my job? Not to judge but to give TLC to sick ones here?” I knew the deputy was passing by and I wanted him to hear me.
At that point, I walked out of the pharmacy and he was right there. He didn’t say anything but I intended for him to hear my response. He couldn’t look me in the eye.
The inmate took the medications and immediately felt relief. So he requested if he could go back to his unit. I informed him that the medications would continually be given for up to 5 days. He said “thank you” and walked away, not holding his stomach anymore.
James also reminded us about learning how to tame our tongue. Such a small organ but if we are not careful, it’s unimaginable to know how much damage it can do! Before we say anything, we must be careful that the words are not something we will regret later. It’s either you use your tongue to build up someone or hurt them. Your choice…Will you have a wicked tongue? Or will it be under control?
James 3:7-12 - “People can tame all kinds of animals and birds and reptiles and fish, but no one can tame the tongue. It is an uncontrollable evil, full of deadly poison. Sometimes, it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it breaks out into curses against those who have been made in the image of God. And so, blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right! Does a spring of water bubble out with both fresh water and bitter water? Can you pick olives from a fig tree or figs from a grapevine? No, and you can’t draw fresh water from a salty pool.”
Please turn up your volume and enjoy this song of worship! To God be the glory!
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 himself and ended up injuring his attacker severely.
[Source: NLT 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].