Monday, November 1, 2010

Church and Medical Emergencies

I was in worship at our contemporary service yesterday and a 93 year old lady became ill. She was sitting in the row behind me. She was nonresponsive. Here's my advice in these types of circumstances.

1. Stop the service. The pastor was in the middle of his sermon, but guess what, if you've got people tending to a medical emergency in the middle of your service, chances are you're not going to retain the attention of the people in the service...they will be watching the emergency.

2. Drop to your knees and Pray. We just started a series on God being enough...even in the midst of our nightmares. So while medical attention is wise and can be the way God answers prayers, that doesn't mean we should not call upon the Lord. Our pastor did a great job of being attentive to prayerfulness in these moments.

3. Once that person has been tended to, continue to roll with the service. It may move us toward different directions which we have to be able to discern, but even though people will have divided attention, God's Word needs proclaimed all the more.


I have seen two medical emergencies in worship services. The one from yesterday just happened to have a retired nurse sitting next to the woman and an EMT across the aisle...God provides and within 5 minutes the ambulance was here and she had regained consciousness.

The second instance was at a church near Jackson. They were doing a sermon series on the Chronicles of Narnia and the Sunday Shaina and I visited, the theme was on Turkish Delight...a candy made famous by the book/movie. On our way into the service, each person received a bag of turkish delight. During the message, there was a medical emergency and a nurse, who was still in her scrubs and had come to church straight from a shift ran to the man's aid and discovered that he was in diabetic shock. She shouted out, "does anyone have any sugar?" And lo and behold, we had a few hundred bags of Turkish Delight to offer her and the man was able to walk out of the sanctuary to be further attended to. Coincidence?

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