Sep 10, 2013

Do You Think The Disciples Had TB?

I wrote this post back in September of 2013... in my other new town. In this new town I have decided I can no longer do anything that involves getting a TB test, as I'm convinced they are watching me... whoever they are.

A few weeks ago I went to one of our local hospitals for training to become a volunteer Chaplain.
I am comfortable around people who are hurting, sick and in need of encouragement. This fills my soul and
I thought perhaps this would be a good fit for me in my new town.
I know I need to stop calling it new... but it still feels that way.

The training was going so well and then I was asked when I had my last Tb test. I felt like I should have an answer for this question but I was dumb struck. 
I mumbled something like, "I don't know, maybe when I was a kid, maybe at birth, wait, um, no, I have no idea."
Brilliant answer.

They sent me to Occupational Health for a blood test. Easy peasy.
Until they called the next day with the results. 
The nurse explained that I tested positive for TB and that I would need a chest xray. 
Wait, what?
I asked her if these tests were ever wrong as I was sure I did not have TB. What is TB anyway? I asked if it was serious. Really.. I said those words.
I said a few other stupid things. 
The nurse joined in as well.

"Well, I've never actually had anyone test positive so I am not sure what is next. You have to register with Public Health and they will counsel you."
Wow, thanks for the reassurance.

Wait... am I now on a watch list? Do I get a leg bracelet? Can I enter school property? 
What do I need counseling for? 
Is there a detox program included? 
Is there a spa involved?
My mind was whirling.
WebMD was sure to put my mind at ease, right?

We set up an appointment the next day for a chest xray.
I texted my hubby and said, "Guess who has TB?"
He replied...."You do not!"
Actually, that is his response to 90% of the stuff, i.e., intelligent words I say to him.

I remember telling him that his 4 yr old son had a hernia. It had popped out in the bathtub and I gently pushed it back in, realizing what it was.
He came home from the hospital that night and replied, "He does not!"
The boy turned 20 last month and hubby is still giving me the same reply. 
Slow learner.

I went for the xray. The tech gave me a CD and told me to take it to my Public Health appointment. The one I did not plan on going to. Come on.
Instead I took it to my hubby and he gave it to his radiologist to read.
It came back clear. This means I have no active TB but possibly had it as a child and my healthy body fought it off. A common occurrence.

Two days later, I receive a phone call from Public Health wanting to set up an appointment with me, while explaining the levels of treatment available. Nine months or as short as four months, while needing to go into the clinic once a week to take the multiple course of heavy antibiotics.
Maybe it's me, but it seems we are getting a little excited before we know the end of the story here.
Slow down sister nurse.

I am driving during this discussion and the hubby is next to me. He is turning red, while saying, "You are not taking those treatments."
Now I know I'm on a watch list.

Meanwhile, I am still waiting for the call from Occupational Health telling me it was clear. 
It's been two weeks.
They tell you they will let you know and then nada, zilch.. they leave you in a dark room with no light switch and no exit.
Not everyone is married to a Doc who can ask his radiologist to look at a film.
It seems some may have fear or concerns and be left waiting, for weeks.

I mentioned this situation to a friend and her response was priceless.
She said, "Imagine what diseases the disciples had."
I laughed out loud.

I imagine they had more aches, pains and diseases without cure than I could count.
We know Paul asked three times to have the thorn in his side removed. We don't know what his health concern was, but if Paul asked three times it had to be considerable.
That guy was a stud.

They probably had some Hyssop oil as well as wine and myrrh for pain. 
Hmm... sounds similar to today.
Let's face it, some days there isn't anything better than two Advil and a diet coke.

Makes me wonder if I would have said to Jesus, "My head really hurts today, I'm gonna lay here with my wine and myrrh compress till I feel better"... like the next century.
What a wimp.

How do we keep from becoming so pampered and spoiled that we are useless in sharing the Gospel of Christ?
We fill our bodies with comfort and ease, but our souls are empty without Truth.
We have lost our saltiness.

The disciples, though far from perfect, should give us hope.
They were common men accompanied by common women... but they were shining lights to those in need of a Savior.

They fought about stupid things, like who should be first and where they should sit.. and according to the above picture, nicknames were an issue.

They were just like us... and yet so different.
They did not put their needs first.
They gave up their lives, for a Savior they didn't quite understand.

They did not have the comfort of an extra tunic, or a bed to lay their head.
They were at the mercy of others. 
We would do well to lean on one another instead of our compresses and medications.

We are who He calls us to be, the common man and woman... created in His image and purposed for His glory.
Christ sees us as shining stars and precious jewels.
He asks us to be obedient and purposeful for Him... even in distress and uncomfortableness.

I am grateful for modern medicine and advil.
I'll always be a wimp compared to the early disciples, but I recognize God does not compare me to them.. or you.
He expects me to do what He puts in front of me, regardless of headaches or TB.
And thank goodness for WebMd. That cleared up a whole lot of questions. Yikes!

What is holding you back today?

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