by Maggie Mejia
In a previous hospital job, sometimes I was in the room when doctors came to see patients. While there, I noticed some doctors had great bedside manners, and others… not so much. They’d go in, give the patient an update about their condition, warn them of any obstacles they see ahead, and give direction as to what the patient should do next. They’d usually end each conversation by asking “any questions?” and usually the patient would reply “no questions, thank you.”
The patient was usually older and often alone. If I was in the room, I’d often follow up with, “hey, I’ll be praying everything goes well for you, and that you see brighter days… we can’t have your pretty face around here for too much longer, you’re distracting all of us.” (Most of the patients were elderly and it would get a laugh) we’d chuckle, and some of them would allow me to pray for them right there.
Usually on my ride home, I’d sit in silence. No music, no podcast. After hearing call bells all day, silence was a blessing before arriving home to my own “call bells” (every parent just understood me). I’d reflect on my day and wonder, “what is going on in the head of the lady in Rm. 412 after the doctor left? Is she scared, lonely, confused, angry? Are her thoughts racing?”
Sometimes I’d become angry because of the lack of bedside manner I saw in these doctors. Did they not care? Did they not understand that this was someone’s mother, daughter, grandma, aunt? But then God reminded me, “you don’t have to be a doctor to give those patients what they need”… I was a bit confused by this still voice within me.
I sensed the Holy Spirit say, “you’re upset that they are not receiving bedside manner, but you’re in the room with them, right? You can give them bedside MANNA!” I saw the image of a table filled with thoughts in front of these patients. They had so many bad thoughts to choose from: worry, doubt, pain, fear, loneliness, regret, shame, guilt. The Holy Spirit said, “Give them options.” Show them that manna is available and they have the option of CHOOSING it, when times of trouble and mental turmoil come.
What is manna? Manna was God’s provision to Israel when they were wandering in the wilderness for 40 years. God never let them go hungry. He wanted the same for these patients, and he wants the same for you and I today. When we feel stuck for whatever reason: depression, illness, pain, anxiety… we have options! Jesus, God, our great Physician, has the BEST manna we can ever receive!
Some of you know that I have Fibromyalgia. And it can sometimes feel mentality debilitating when you are physically unable to get out of bed. However, God’s word & thoughts toward me are what keep me fed in bed. I can testify it is available to ALL of us in times of need. So here I am giving you the same advice I give myself and gave those patients in their time of need.
I know it’s hard, real hard sometimes, to get your thoughts to stop racing during tragic times in your life. But I want you to know a couple of things that have helped me, when my thoughts were getting the best of me because my body was unable to busy itself and distract me from my pain at the time.
1. Tell yourself to W.A.I.T. And ask, What Am I Thinking? Did you know we can think about what we’re thinking about? If you see that all you’re thinking about is the worst, or feel out of control because thoughts are flying by so quickly…
2. STOP. DROP. AND ROLL! Use your body to stop the thoughts. Meaning, clap your hands, say STOP out loud, do what you need to do (with your body) to interrupt the thought. (it will abruptly stop… it’s one of the coolest things about the mind-body connection) but then act fast going into the next step because now you need a new focus & direction for your mind.
3. DROP! Start dropping all of the lies. Example: A lot of patients would start thinking about death. They were alone, fearful and regretting things they never got to do. Dropping means taking all of those thoughts – one by one – and saying, DROP! Why? Because in order to pick up TRUTH, we have to drop those lies first!
So let’s recap what you’ve done so far… you’ve Waited, understood what you’re thinking, You Stopped, those thoughts using your body, Dropped, those lies that the enemy was feeding you, and exchanged them for TRUE statements. Now it’s time to ROLL.
4. ROLL – Shower yourself with The Reality Of Life & Love in Christ.
What Does Your Real Reality Look Like? Your Life + Love In Christ!
1. I’m worth Jesus’ life. Therefore, I’m priceless and worthy. Even now I have purpose. (Luke 12:6-7)
2. I’m God’s precious child and He delights in being my Father. (Galatians 3:26)
3. I’m connected to Jesus and He sustains my life. (John 15:5)
4. My body is the home of God’s Holy Spirit. (1 Corinthians 3:16)
5. My current condition is new, transformed, and remade to look like Christ (John 1:12-13)
6. God showers me in His grace and mercy, now and forever. (Ephesians 2:7)
7. My life is overflowing with the abundance that Jesus gives me. (John 10:10)
8. I’m not afraid of death because I have eternal life in Jesus. (1 Corinthians 15:56-57)
9. Because of Jesus, I’m completely right with God. I don’t need to work for His favor. (2 Corinthians 5:21)
10. I’m seated next to Jesus in heaven right now. (Ephesians 2:6)
11. I have everything I will ever need in this life and the next. (Ephesians 1:3)
Your TRUE Reality is always your position in Christ no matter what you have going on in the moment. When your mind starts racing, please know that you have THESE OPTIONS sitting on THAT SAME TABLE of thoughts in front of you. I pray this small exercise helped you in a big way.
Maggie Mejia is a committed participant of Living Hope Church. She and her husband, Ed, have three children and are preparing to plant a church in Chandler, AZ. Read more about this plant here.