I would have to say when it comes to medicine and medical workers I am a bit of an expert. I have had numerous surgeries from multiple injuries due to playing sports such as football, hockey, and Rugby and hobbies such as rock climbing, motocross, and surfing. And because of this reality, I have been to many hospitals and have had numerous doctors, nurses, and physician assistants work on me. Most of the time this team of medical workers do the best job they can, but are they heroes?
For many, they are, as depicted in the ubiquitous signs that say, “Not All Superheroes Wear Capes” But aren’t they just doing their job? I suppose it’s how you define a hero. If heroism is overcoming fear to do something courageous, I think that could define what many medical workers have done through the Pandemic. But I think there is another word that best explains what medical workers do and that is “Compassion.”
I just went to an urgent care unit for cracked ribs that occurred on a fall while rock climbing, and was very much impressed by the compassion and care of the medical workers. As I said, I have had many encounters with medical professionals, but there was something about this staff that reminded me that there are hundreds of unheralded workers that go to work every day and get limited credit for what they do. It made me think, this is really what the world needs, Compassion!
“But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion”Luke 10:33
We are starving for it, and if anyone should be the leaders in compassion it should be those that have been reconciled to God through the compassionate sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and claim to be His followers. Most of the time the word compassion is used in the New Testament, it is connected to our Lord, Jesus since it was His compassion for broken people like us that sent Him to His cross. When Jesus is telling the story of the Good Samaritan which is an analogy for how compassionate we should all be, He highlights the motive of the Samaritan, when He says, “a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion,” and it was that compassion that moved him to treat his avowed enemy so well. Imagine if everyone was motivated by compassion, and not revenge and hate, or the will to power, that is so often displayed?
As followers of Jesus, we are being conformed to the character of Jesus Christ, and if Jesus was motivated by compassion to sacrifice Himself for our good, aren’t we called to be compassionate people aiming at bridge-building, rather than looking like those that are seeking their rights with impunity? The reality here is that being compassionate is not exclusive to the religious, as some people feel. Biblically speaking we are all sinful and fall short of the Kingdom of God (Romans 3:23), but we are also all made in God’s image (Genesis 1:26-27), and capable of reflecting God’s character, which many in the world do better than those claiming to know Jesus Christ. It’s called “Common Grace,” which is the grace that God gives to all of humanity. It is His good gift that He freely gives because of His love for His creation. Common Grace allows all of humanity to know what is right, because God writes His law on their hearts (Romans 2:14-15), and puts eternity into their heart (Ecclesiastes 3:11), allowing us to know not only what’s right and wrong, but that He exists. Unfortunately, our default mechanism is to reject this knowledge for our own broken reason (Romans 1:21-23).
While that common grace is certainly a gift that God gives so that we can live in unity with one another, it is not a saving grace, which comes by Christ’s sacrificial act on His cross for our salvation (See 2 Corinthians 5:21). So in the end, I want to thank those of you who have chosen professions such as the medical profession, because you had a desire to help people, because my recent trip to the hospital was a reminder that many in the medical field, truly do care about their fellow human being, and have shown great compassion to those they serve. Whether that makes them heroes is debatable, but some of them are superheroes in my book 🙂