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Patient's Hand On The Doorknob

The "doorknob phenomenon" is an occurrence many
physicians know well. Doctors can proceed meticulously
through complete examinations and medical histories
with their patients, but it is often in the last thirty seconds
of the appointment that the most helpful information
is revealed. When a patient's hand is on the doorknob,
body halfway out the door, vital inquiries seem to be
made; crucial information is shared almost in passing.
Many have speculated as to the reasons behind the
doorknob phenomenon (which is perhaps not limited
to the field of medicine), though a cure seems unlikely.
Until then, words uttered on the threshold remain
a valuable entity to the physician.

If I were to speak on behalf of the patient (and perhaps
I've been a perpetrator of the phenomenon myself),
I would note that the doorknob marks his last chance
to be heard. Whatever the reason for not speaking
up until that point-fear, discomfort, shame, or denial-
he knows the criticalness of that moment. In thirty
seconds, he will no longer be in the presence of one
who offers healing. At the threshold between doctor's
office and daily life, the right words are imperative;
time is of essence.

I wonder if there is such a threshold as we stand
before the Great Physician. There are times in
prayer where it might feel as if we are moving
down the sterile list of conditions and information.
Work. Finances. Mom. Jack. Future. And where
bringing God in prayer our laundry list of concerns
with repeated perseverance is both necessary and
helpful, perhaps there are times when we have
silenced the greater diagnosis with the words
we have chosen to leave unspoken. Can
a physician heal wounds we will not show,
symptoms we will not mention?

Thankfully, God can and does heal wounds
we can't even articulate. But choosing to
leave out of our prayers the toxic symptoms
of worry and anxiousness hardly shows our
prayer sincere for God's will to be done.
How can He begin the work that needs
to be done in our heart when we refuse
to come near the operating table? Is
there a cure for those who don't seek it?

"Is there no balm in Gilead?" the prophet
Jeremiah once cried. "Is there no physician
there? No healing for the wound of my people?"
Jeremiah lived during one of the most trouble
some periods of Hebrew history. And he
stood on the threshold between a people
sick with rebellion and the great Physician
to whom they refused to cry out in honesty.

"I have listened attentively," the LORD
declared, "but they do not say what is
right. No one repents of his wickedness,
saying, 'What have I done?' Each pursues
his own course like a horse charging into
battle" (Jeremiah 8:6). His words are
weighted with behavior I recognize.
A patient who complains of a cough
while a fatal wound is bleeding will
neither find respite for the cough
nor her unspoken pain; a good
physician would not treat the
cough until the bleeding has
been stopped.

In Jeremiah's day as in our own,
the promise of a painless remedy
was not left unspoken. Of these
prophets of deceit God uttered,
"They dress the wound of my
people as though it were not
serious. 'Peace, peace,' they
say, when there is no peace"
(8:11). Their promises are easy
to stand beside but crumble under
the weight of us. To stand in honesty
before the Great Physician is more difficult.
It is to admit we need to be made well,
however painful the remedy or costly
the cure.

The great hymn places before us
a powerful resolution:

No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground
He comes to make His blessing flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found.

The woundedness of humanity is serious.
It cannot be bandaged as anything less
than a mortal wound. Let us not wait until
we've reached the threshold of life and
death to address the indications of our
illness. But let us in hope and honesty
come into the presence of one who imparts
healing. In the coming of Christ, God
offers a cure that extends as far as the
wound has festered. Jill Carattini


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* * * Four important things to KNOW: #1) For ALL (Americans, Muslims, Jews, Catholics, Hindus, Buddhist, Asians, Presbyterians, Europeans, Baptist, Brazilians, Mormons, Methodist, French, etc.) have sinned & fall short of the glory of God. #2) For the wages of above (see #1) are DEATH (Hell, eternal separation from God, & damnation) but the Gift (free & at no charge to you) of God (Creator, Jehovah, & Trinity) is Eternal Life (Heaven) through (in union with) Jesus Christ (God, Lord, 2nd Person of The Trinity, Messiah, Prince of Peace & Savior of the World). #3) For God so greatly loved & dearly prized the world (Americans, Muslims, Jews, Catholics, Hindus, Buddhist, Asians, Presbyterians, Europeans, Baptist, Brazilians, Mormons, Methodist, French, etc.) that He even gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, that whosoever (anyone, anywhere, anytime - while still living) believes (trust in, relies on, clings to, depends completely on) Him shall have eternal (everlasting) life (heaven). #4) Jesus said: "I am THE WAY, THE TRUTH, & THE LIFE. No one (male/female - American, Muslim, Jew, Catholic, Hindu, Buddhist, Asian, Presbyterian, European, Baptist, Brazilian, Mormons, Methodist, French, etc. ) comes (arrives) to the Father (with GOD in Heaven) EXCEPT BY (through) ME (no other name). *** This wonderful loving GOD gives you the choice - - - (Rev. 3:20) {Please note that church membership, baptism, doing good things, etc. are not requirements for becoming a Christian - however they are great afterwards!!!} *** Jesus said, "Wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction (Hell, damnation, eternal punishment), and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life (Heaven, eternal happiness, forever with God), and only a few find it.

God loves you so much that He died for you!!!

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