7 Lessons from a Hospital Stay

A few weeks ago, I spent a couple days in the hospital dealing with an unexpected health issue. I’m doing well in recovery, and God has (as always) been gracious. I’ll be honest, though, to say that just those few days have made me think about some things over the last few weeks:  

  1. The work of God is hardly dependent on me. Neither one of my professional roles hit a roadblock simply because I was out of commission for a couple days. The people of God who work with me simply stepped up to the plate like they’ve always done. 
  2. I don’t pray enough for doctors and nurses in my church. They’re amazing people who serve others every day – and they deal with daily life and death issues more than most of us do even as pastors. I need to intercede more for them. 
  3. I can survive without checking my phone multiple times a day. I’d forgotten that we used to live without cell phones connected at our hips. Frankly, it was kind of nice to be hands-free for a little while. 
  4. My body will sometimes slow my heart down. I confess that the Lord had already been challenging me about getting sufficient rest – and my illness only made that need more apparent. God has a way of catching our attention at times.  
  5. God has uniquely gifted human beings with incredible intelligence.Every time I learned something new about a medical test or instrument, I marveled at what human beings are capable of doing. Medicine is fascinating because God has given brains to a lot of people.  
  6. The family of God is special.God’s people really care for each other. Even when some of us aren’t comfortable in hospital settings, love compels us to reach out to visit and pray for others. I grew to love my church family even more during these days. 
  7. I take my wife for granted. I sometimes forget how much she loves me until she ministers to me in need. I’m uniquely blessed. 

Just some thoughts . . . and ones I trust I will not forget soon.  


  • Kay Foxx says:

    So glad you are feeling better ,and from a nurse, I will tell you that prayers from my patients and others are invaluable and coveted 😊

  • Don Matthews says:

    All of the above are absolutely true. After spending 24 day in three different stays at the hospital there are several things I have learned.
    1. I am completely dependent on the Doctors, Nurses and staff for my well-being.
    2. I was amazed that 99.9 % of the healing team was glad for me to ask to pray for them. This opened a door to talk about their relationship with God (As they know him). I could tell you story after story of staff coming by my room and pouring their heart out or asking me to pray for someone else on the team. The one thing I learned was there is an overwhelming desire to know God in their lives.
    3. As a pastor and leader we find ourselves around church “God fearing people”. We lose our day by day touch with ordinary people (especially the lost.) It gave me great encouragement to see a people searching for God.
    4. When you are in the hospital you are wondering what the next test or examination will bring. One will quickly realize that you are a patient and you are “exposed” to all kinds of things that require humility. That is good and bad. The good thing is to realize that even in the most uncomfortable situation, God is in control and you have an opportunity to represent Christ. Even when I went into the operating room I had the opportunity to pray for those in the room before surgery. I was amazed how receptive they were.

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