You who dwell in the garden with friends in attendance,let me hear your voice.
Song of Songs 8:13
As I mentioned last week I had to attend hospital yesterday for a check on my eyes. I had never been to this particular hospital before, and so was not quite sure what to expect. However it does have a specialized eye unit. In fact, on arrival the signage in the foyer was very clear making it easy to find the correct department. In the waiting room there were a great number of people; people of every age, size, shape, religion and ethnicity you could think of. The clinic was extremely busy, indeed, one of the nurses said that they had seen 100 patients one morning last week with a further 117 at the afternoon clinic. I wondered how long I would need to wait to be seen but the whole process worked with the efficiency of a well oiled machine so that I was seen by the consultant on time.
Like their patients, the staff too, was equally ethnically diverse, but that made no difference to the way in which they treated them. That is the point that I must emphasise; despite the high volume of patients, each one received the same high level of kindness, courtesy and respect, whoever they were.
Yet there is so much racial and religious hatred in the world today. Why? What possible reason do people have for inciting violence against others on the basis of their religion, gender or the colour of their skin? Why do “we” think we are superior to “them”? I appreciate that the Psalmist said: You have made them a little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honour Psalm 8:5 (NIV), but he was referring to all men, not just the well heeled, middle class white person who may, or may not, attend a Christian church on Sunday. After all, Jesus came to earth as a Jew but every man woman and child on this planet is made in God’s image.
This busy hospital, whose staff came from such a wide range of races and religions, set an example for the world. If they can work together as effectively as they do, and treat all their patients with the courtesy and respect that they showed to everybody yesterday, why cannot the rest of us? As Jesus Himself said: ‘For whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.’ Mark 3:35.
There was no doubt that God was there yesterday in that busy hospital department.
And I was pleased to learn that the mole on the back of my eye though near the optic nerve is not malignant.
Peter is a father and a grandfather who has been retired from full time employment for a number of years