I recalled those messy locks of hair turning gray. The lines on her forehead that spoke about the harsh habits she was entangled in. The same complaints of chest pain despite the normal findings.
"You look familiar," I couldn't believe I uttered when I usually tried to maintain my professionalism when it came to dealing with sick inmates.
"Yes, Ma'am. You've treated me once. My chest is hurting again. It started today," she rapidly responded.
"Did you get released before?" I continued.
"Yes," she coyly replied.
"What happened? What were you doing that your chest started bothering you?" I probed.
"I was released. I thought I could change. But it's impossible! I went back to using drugs!" she replied without hesitation.
"What kind and how much a day? And the last time you had the drugs?"
"Meth...a lot....and the day I got arrested, that was the last time, Ma'am."
After taking her vital signs and probing more relating to the type and degree of her chest pain, I motioned for her to go into one of the exam rooms so I could take an EKG, an electrical reading of her heart. She knew the treatment modality so well. And everything was normal.
She bowed her head in disbelief. She was very sure of this pain bothering her. How could this be impossible?
"Ma'am," I interrupted her thoughts, "Take care of yourself. It is possible that the meth had this effect on you. If every time your chest hurt, just let your unit know. They will send you down here every time. It's just good to check if there's something more serious or not. Okay?"
Meth...or Methamphetamines...One of the drugs out in the streets. Used by many. Someone can get hooked even with its first use. But the effects are disastrous. Health becomes at risk. Relationships suffer. Sensing euphoria during the early stages, only to feel sicker, angry, depressed, ashamed or guilty the next. And the users answer to the latter? To use more meth! No wonder she said that "it was impossible". Impossible to break that habit!
But I believe in God Who is able! I believe in "what's impossible to us, men, is not with God!" [Luke 18:27]
We all have our failures. We all are entangled in different kinds of sins. Of habits that are not pleasing to God. There is a way out....Jesus... Who said, "I am the only WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE..." [John 14:6; emphasis mine]. Let's turn all our impossible to possible, not with our way but with God's way....But you must believe...I was once like you except now, I believe...in Jesus...
Lord, today, I praise Your Holy Name. May you be the One glorified in everything. Lord, may many more lost wanderers turn to You. May they realize that what's impossible is not with You, our awesome God. Glory be to You now and forever. Thank You for loving us. Thank You for sending Jesus so our relationship with You can be made right because of His sacrifice. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
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].