Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Record Was Stuck

Many years ago, i.e., late 60's, a Physician thought I might have Tuberculosis. I've been reminded of this experience with the local news of a patient in Richmond, KY who has diagnosised with TB. So, the Physician sent me to a state TB hospital in Paris, Kentucky where I was going to be tested. He told me that if they thought I had the disease they would keep me. I was terrified when we drove up to a group of older buildings which were the TB Sanatorium. There were patients around the grounds who looked gaunt and slowly walked with masks covering their face. In the waiting room, I remember there was a Christmas carol playing somewhere and the record was stuck. The same few bars of music played over and over for the long wait we had in the reception room which was covered with slick tiles--walls and floor. The only chairs were cold metal chairs and the magazine rack had a few old and used magazines. I thought I might have to stay and I didn't like the prospects. After a bunch of X-rays, the TB Physician had me to cough and spit in a small bottle. I couldn't cough up anything to spit into the bottle. Much later that day, I was dismissed to go home. I thought I'd been redeemed--you know saved from the eternal judgement. Whatever life lessons may be in that experience, I hope God has a better reception room.

There have been many other times when I wasn't sure what the future might hold. There were decisions to be made, some of those decisions were mine and frequently others were going to make decisions which would effect me significantly. I like having control over decisions that effect my future. Nevertheless, that's what happens in life--someone else's decisions have significant influence on my life. When I have to make those decisions that effect others, I pray that I'm very respectful of them and their thoughts. I want to listen carefully before I make those decisions. When others are making those decisions, I do have some control about how I respond to those decisions, especially about the attitude with which I respond. This isn't easy but it seems very important for my emotional health and for the good of the group.