So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:26-28
It was in a hospital at midnight that a bloodied young man with a stab wound broke my heart. And also opened it.
I paused at the door to his ER room. Seeing on the floor, and on his chest, bloody gauzes, this middle-aged white Lutheran female made quick, narrow-minded assumptions. I felt a huge gap between the two of us. Here was a young Hispanic man from Houston’s Southwest with a stab wound. “What in the world was I doing here? Or could I do here?” A nurse seemed to confirm that; she was saying to him, “YOU don’t want to see a chaplain, do you?”
Perhaps it was her inflection or her assumption, perhaps it was my call to care for the sick, or perhaps it was just instinct that led me to his side. I asked him if there was anything I could do for him. He simply responded, “Will you just let my mom know that I’m going to be OK?” And with that, all the barriers that I had put up came crashing down. His race, his age, his situation — none of that mattered. What mattered was that he was someone’s son and he was concerned about his mother.
And then I knew that it was the Holy Spirit that led me to his side. But not just for him, but for me, too.
Prayer: Open my heart, Lord, to those who are different from me. Help me see your face in the face of a stranger. And let me be an instrument of your peace. Amen.
Deaconess Lisa Donahue