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Devotional of Thanks - Monday March 30

Updated: Apr 1, 2020

Today we give thanks for the blessing of physicians as they serve on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic and in so many other settings. I came across this article.

Frederick Buechner said, “The place God calls us to is the place where our deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”

Let us reflect upon and celebrate the vocation of the physician.  The role of the physician in the life of a community is an ancient one indeed.   For as long as there has been illness and disease among humans, there have been those moved to compassion at the suffering of their neighbors—those who have desired to ease the pain and cure the sick.  Today we give thanks for those women and men who have found their greatest joy in service to one of the world’s deepest hungers: the hunger for healing and wellness.

As we open our time of prayer, let us listen to the words of scripture, celebrating the deep connection that our ancestors in the faith perceived between God and the physician:

A reading from the book of Sirach. 

"Honor physicians for their services, for the Lord created them; for their gift of healing comes from the Most High, and they are rewarded by God.

The skill of physicians makes them distinguished, and in the presence of the great they are admired. The Lord created medicines out of the earth…through which

the physician heals and takes away pain; the pharmacist makes a mixture from them.

God's works will never be finished; and from them health spreads over all the earth.

My child, when you are ill, do not delay, but pray to the Lord, and the Lord will heal you.

Give up your faults and direct your hands rightly, and cleanse your heart from all sin…Then give

the physician a place, for the Lord created him; do not let a physician leave you, for you need him.

There may come a time when recovery lies in the hands of physicians, for they too pray to the Lord that the Lord grant them success in diagnosis and in healing, for the sake of preserving life.”

The Scriptures remind us that it is God who provides medicines from among the abundance of creation.  It is God who is the source of all wisdom, God who is the source of illumination in diagnosis, and ultimately, God who heals.  But, it also reminds us that God needs collaborators in the process of healing.  The physician has a special “place” in God’s plan to restore health and wellness.  And so, today, let us remember and pray for all those who collaborate with God’s healing as physicians.

I invite you to call to mind physicians who have gone before us and with whom you work on a daily basis, those who serve within your health system, and those who have most touched your life and the lives of those you love. 

I encourage you to take a moment to give thanks to those doctors that have and are God's healing servants in a broken world!

Merciful God, your healing power is everywhere about us. Strengthen those who work among the sick; give them courage and confidence in all they do. Encourage them when their efforts seem futile or when death prevails. Increase their trust in your power even to overcome death and pain and crying. May they be thankful for every sign of health you give, and humble before the mystery of your healing grace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

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