Bad Things To Good

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." - Romans 8:28 (NIV)

“It will be okay,” my husband reassured…”Try to get some sleep. It’s 2 a.m. now,” he added as he wrapped his arm around me and continued to comfort me.

Few hours before, at work, I dealt with an inmate who had a hypertensive crisis. She was so upset that she hasn’t been getting her medications right away after being transferred from another prison to ours. Her agitated state was not helping her BP level. She must know it as she stated that “I could feel my BP so high now,” as she paired it with buckets of tears, complaining of worsening headache from morning until late evening that she was in front of me. Her tears were true but her complaint was not. She was started with hypertension medications as soon as she got to our facility. The Psych meds she needed was usually not given right away as the inmates needed to wait until the Psych doctor could evaluate them. Unfortunately, they were not patient enough to wait for their appointments.  I was concerned about her very high BP so I immediately consulted the on-call doctor. He decided to just give medications to lower the BP and relieve her headache but in any case of emergency, she would be transported to ER.

After downing 4 total numbers of pills, she sat in the waiting area as I instructed her that I would need to recheck her BP an hour later. 30 minutes prior to that recheck, another inmate had called us and said that the lady didn’t look good. The Charge Nurse ran toward her as I started calling her name. She was not responding and seemed to be shaking uncontrollably as we noticed the right side of her face slightly drooping (to what appeared as stroke at that time). We summoned for an ambulance right away as I gave her oxygen and the other nurse tried to start an IV but she was so strong and fought against her hold and did not want to have an IV started. She just kept making sounds and nodded her head “No!”. There were 3 of the staff but she was strong enough that no one was able to restrain her even as I joined in. She used her legs to move her chair that I gave the Charge Nurse a look and she read my mind that I doubted the existence of her stroke.  She replied with a silent stare as if she doubted my assessment in return that I was wrong as her face was slightly droopy and that she was not able to talk. To make it short, I called the doctor I spoke with who gave the medications and reported to him that the inmate was on her way because there might be a possibility that she was having a stroke. And that the BP didn’t go lower as she remained upset and agitated. It was expected that she would be admitted but as I went home, my heart was heavy. The difficulty of being a nurse set in again as many lives come and go on our hands that depended on our ability to respond and have the right judgments for each critical situation. For each emergency.  For every life. I prayed for that inmate. She was a person. Loved by God the way He loved me. The way He loved everyone. I prayed that nothing would happen to her but if it was true what I sensed about her faking that emergency, I asked that He would reveal it in due time.

On Sunday, as I went back to work, that was the first thing I asked was about that lady. The Charge Nurse had no new info except she was still at the hospital. It was a very busy shift that day. Until....

After my coveted dinner break, I saw the Deputy wheeling in a familiar face. It was her. She went AMA (Against Medical Advice). She was refusing all the treatments, yelling at us the whole time and when the Charge Nurse didn’t grant her the wheelchair, she got upset and immediately got up and like a little child with a tantrum, remained one for a few hours. Except she was not winning in getting her demands. She had no choice but to wait. And like a little child be given the “time out” to make her put her behavior on a scale for her to weigh in on the consequences of her own choice. I was thankful to God in the back of my mind. As the other nurse arrived who worked with me that night pointed her finger at me and quietly whispered so as not to make her hear, “You…Rcubes…” “You doubted her…Hmmm…” She was upset about the whole drama of her wasting our time to save her on what appeared as a life threatening situation. She was good. After all, she was imprisoned for "faking a Work Comp. Claim."

The inmate got tired…waiting…standing firm on her own decision to resist the authority was poor on her part. Her disrespectful attitude would not get her anywhere. She sensed that. She remained sitting on the cold, hard chair for many hours. Upsetting no one but only herself. She broke down…And with tears came the words, “I’m sorry.” That would not be the last tears she would be shedding. We believed she would be more upset. Because on top of the charge she was incarcerated for, another one would be added..."For faking an emergency."

I pushed the metal gate to go to my car in the staff’s parking. I breathed a sigh of relief as I just pondered on what just occurred. God had shown me again, in His mercy, how He could truly turn bad things into good. It was a miracle. It was a door of heaven opening up to that particular knock. Knock from a believing heart and heart that always desired for Him. A dead heart He once revived.A once rebellious heart He wanted to transform. And is still being molded...
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The Attacker (5/15/09)

The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies. Ephesians 6:12 [37 kb]

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].