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Archive for October, 2016

Slaying the Beast

I really hate that feeling when you are inspired to write something, but not sure exactly what to write about. Obviously, each writer wants their blogs to be amazing and thrilling and intriguing, but not each post will be. I guess the only thing I can do is write from the heart, so here is what is heavy on my heart today.

Last Friday was my 40th birthday. I remember, as a child, seeing people who were 40 and thinking, “Man, they’re old!” But I still feel so young. I thought by now that I would have the world figured out and it would be smooth sailing by this age. But that really isn’t the case. I wouldn’t say that I’m clueless. That’s definitely not the case with me, but there are still huge issues that I have a hard time wrapping my brain around. Let’s take the day before my birthday for example.

I was on my way home, chatting with a friend on the phone with the help of my handy dandy headphones. I got to the gas station just before my house and was coming up to the red light at that corner. There was a gentleman on the sidewalk who looked dazed and confused and was walking around in circles. He almost walked out in front of my car! I nearly hit the man! Alarmed, I immediately got off the phone with my friend, and pulled into the gas station and parked. I thought this man definitely had a medical situation going on, but I was unsure as to what it was. I called 911 and started to walk over to him. There was a station attendant who had just walked out to him as well. By the time I got to him, he had collapsed to the ground, doubled over on his knees, face to the pavement. His face was turning purply-blue and we knew right then that he was suffocating. I was terrified! The attendant rolled him over onto his back.The man’s eyes had rolled back into his head, his mouth wide open, tongue at the back of his throat, face purple. To me, it was the look of death. The 911 operator asked me to do CPR on him. I’d had training on how to, but never had an instance to try it out. I was psyching myself up to getting this done and was just about to try when 2 people walked up and said they were nurses. They both went at it hard. It looked like something off of one of those ER TV shows. They were definitely not as gentle about it as I would have been. They were set and determined to save this man’s life. These two heroes had not come to the gas station together. I definitely believe God was looking out for this man! They both just happened to be there at the right time and, without any prior conversation, just formed this immediate team with the goal of saving him. After about 5 or 10 minutes, he began to breath again. Soon after, a police officer arrived, with a black bag he took from his car. He set it next to the man and started speaking very loudly to him. “Sir! Stay with me, sir! Who are you? What’s your name? Open your eyes!” The man was breathing, but unresponsive. The officer began beating him on the chest. Not hard enough to hurt him, but hard enough to annoy him. He continued to speak loudly to him, “SIR! STAY WITH ME!” Then, an ambulance, a firetruck and 2 other police officers arrived. We all backed up and I went to speak to one of the nurses. I asked him what he thought happened. He looked at me like I had two heads. “He just OD’ed!” I looked at the man again, with new eyes. I’d never seen anyone OD before. This was one of the scariest situations I’d ever been in and the only thing I could think to do was to start praying! I prayed allowed, “God, please help him! Save his life! Help this be his bottom that inspires him to get better, be better! God, just PLEASE HELP HIM! Don’t let this be the end for him!” I watched as the police officers and the paramedics pumped him with fluids and helped him to breath again. I watched as they were saving his life. I watched them… helplessly… until they took him away.

I went home and cried in my driveway. I went inside and cried some more and prayed some more. I told God that I was completely useless, totally unqualified, and scared to death of this, but that I now saw that this was a battle that wasn’t just going to go away, and that it was creeping too close to my home. The only way to make it go away was to stop pretending that it wasn’t happening  and to fight it. I needed to become a warrior for God and His children! But I was stuck on being unqualified. I told God that if He could just tell me what to do, I would do it. Then, I started reading a book that my church started studying just that week. We were to form small groups and discuss the book. The very first chapter was about being unqualified for the works that God calls us for. Hadn’t I just prayed that? Wasn’t that a direct answer to my prayer? After reading the first chapter, I decided to do some research. I found a lady near me that had a new way of looking at the situation. Instead of just imploring the addicts to get help, she was raising money to buy 3 months of health insurance for them to send them to rehab in another state! I called her the next day and we chatted for 30 minutes about what needed to be done. I told her I was inexperienced, but had a desire to help. She said I could by simply helping her to raise money. I met her the next day to get fliers from her and we chatted a bit more.

I had heard about all the people ODing in our state. The numbers just kept rising and all I did was shake my head and say, “What a shame!” I figured I was unqualified and so, there was nothing that I could do, other than pray. But do you realize that God not only calls us to pray, but He calls us to action?! Yes, we are to come to Him first for an answer, but sometimes He needs us to be the hands to preform the miracles He wants to create! Even though you may be unqualified, He can still use you to do something. King David was just a small, scrawny shepherd boy. His own father didn’t even think he was worth looking at when they were looking for a new king. He left David in the fields looking after the sheep. And when he brought the cheese to the battle field where they were fighting Goliath, he was laughed at when he said he could beat him. But without armor, without a sword, this scrawny little shepherd boy brought down this 9′ tall beast! That’s where we are today! Heroin is this huge beast that we need to look in the eye and say, “I’m not afraid of you because my God is even BIGGER than you!” If we release our God on this beast, He can demolish it, but we can’t just sit back, fold our fingers and simply just pray about it! We need to go to war and be the soldiers of God’s will! We need to listen for His direction and then take action! I’m not sure where He will lead me, but I know that I am willing. I don’t have any of this figured out, but I do know that it’s time for me to step up and stop being afraid of the beast!