Tag: Medical

The Frontline

CF530100-3666-403D-895E-6B8820C1330B

There’s a new phrase in town. Well… new in context, anyway…

“The Frontlines”

I’m seeing posts all over Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, & the news about workers, “On the frontline’s” in this COVID-19 pandemic, and something about it is bothering me.

Context

How you use a word makes a huge difference in its meaning, and how people take it. The word, “frontline’s” has always been a word reserved for reference to wars and battles being fought.

Bullets flying, bombs exploding, swords forcibly rammed into abdominal cavities so hard they come out the victims back, severing the spinal cord, flesh being torn from bone by the force of blazing hot metal ripping through it, soldiers being doused in Napalm, (a highly flammable sticky jelly used in incendiary bombs and flamethrowers, consisting of gasoline thickened with special soaps) thereby dying a horribly agonizing death, or worse , surviving a Napalm attack only to live the rest of their lives horribly disfigured and in constant pain… you catch my meaning.

So when I see grocery store clerks and other essential workers describing or being described as, “being on the frontline” of the pandemic—which is essentially a bad cold/flu—my brain has a hard time reckoning it.

Here’s the thing—literally EVERYONE in my immediate family is considered an “essential worker” because of what they do and who they do it for. Even I—as a care provider—am considered an “essential worker” during the pandemic. I have several friends who work in grocery stores. One of my sons is a Meat Cutter, aka Butcher, for Safeway. Yet no one—in my family at least—has yet referred to themselves as being, “on the frontline.”

I absolutely DO, consider police, doctors, and nurses as being on the frontline’s, because of how absolutely intense that situation is in this situation. However, (and yes, I’ve seen the news and been in the stores) I would not consider working in any kind of store or other business that I can think of at the moment, being “on the frontline’s” though I definitely DO acknowledge how absolutely intense and difficult it has been for those workers, God bless their souls for putting up with all the B.S. every day that they show up for work! Nothing but love here, people… nothing but love!

But let’s regroup for a minute and consider what’s been going on. There’s a virus, yes. It has killed more people than anyone hoped it would, (if they even had any hopes where that was concerned in the first place) and yes, essential workers are absolutely putting their health and their family’s health in jeopardy every time they go to work, but… the phrase “frontline’s” — I dunno… I don’t think I’d go that far.

There are no bullets. Well… no more than usual, anyway…

There are no bombs.

There are no swords.

There is no Napalm.

Something else has been bothering me. I’ve seen people in this country—some, I know personally, go from trashing the president for shutting down the country, to not shutting it down fast enough, to not opening it soon enough, to opening it too soon, all in a span of about 60 days. Really?? Have we all become bi-polar, or have we just been watching the news too much and believing EVERYTHING we’re being force-fed in order to keep us in control by living in a state of constant fear?

We need to be stronger than this, people.

Be safe. Wash your hands. Wear your mask—by the way, it should be covering BOTH your nose AND your mouth, not one or the other as I’ve seen quite a lot of. I mean honestly, what’s the point in wearing the damn thing if you’re going to wear it wrong? It’s definitely not protecting you or the people you come in contact with if either your nose or your mouth are not covered, and if you’re going to wear it that way, don’t complain about the risk factor of your job on the frontline’s, because that just makes no sense. They’re uncomfortable. They’re hot. It’s hard to breathe in them. Wearing one ALL DAY fricking SUCKS! But it’s supposed to be working for your protection and the protection of others, and if you’re not wearing it correctly then you are part of the problem and should stay home.

I’m sorry if any of this upsets or offends anyone, but truth is like this, and if you have a problem with any of it, your problem isn’t with me, it’s with hearing the truth and having to acknowledge it. Many of you will blow it off and tell me how wrong I am. Okay, but that doesn’t change the truth of it. If I lose any friends over this then I want to say that I sincerely hope you stay safe and stay well, and THANK YOU for all your hard work and personal sacrifice! I do greatly appreciate it so much more than you might think I do, I just seriously think people need to reconsider some things.

Have a blessed day.

Crystal

How Do You Feel?

2881E7B6-04D2-452F-B53F-A48FBD2B60B8This morning, a Facebook writing group moderator posted the question, “How do you feel?” With a picture of Spock in front of the computer. The computer was asking the question of Spock and, being half Vulcan, he didn’t understand the question. His mother explained that the computer knows he’s half human, and is simply asking him how he feels in that context. Spock, in true Vulcan form, replies, “The question is irrelevant.” But is it? Even Spock has feelings, whether he chooses to acknowledge them or not.

As I sat there for a few minutes, pondering the question, I was slightly overwhelmed by what I really was feeling. Here’s what I came up with.

Depressed because I used to see my oldest four sons at least once a week, and I miss their big bear hugs, and refrigerator raids with, “What’s good to eat?” queries. I haven’t see them in person in two months.

Thankful for FaceTime so we can at least have cyber visits.

Annoyed because I used to enjoy going shopping and wandering aimlessly through malls, and visiting Barnes & Nobel, but now the options are extremely limited, and B&N is out of the question.

I miss going to the library only one block from my house, and where some of my friends work.

I miss meeting up to go out to eat every Thursday morning, when my husband is coming off night shift, and my youngest son and I are just getting our day started.

I miss seeing people’s faces, knowing they’re smiling without having to look for the eye crinkles behind the mask, and chatting with total strangers about random commonalities while out running errands.

I miss turning on the TV and radio without having to hear the latest death toll, and what to do to stay safe and healthy.

I miss not ever having heard the phrases, “Social Distancing” & “Shelter In Place.”

I miss opening Facebook and NOT seeing the term COVID-19 every other post.

I feel disappointed by all the people who have shown their true colors by hoarding food and toilet paper, behaving atrociously in public places, stealing their neighbors deliveries, and harassing their fellow humans.

I miss writing without the influence of being under lockdown and the depression it causes.

I feel sad for the high school students who will miss out on the prom, and both high school & college students who will not be walking in a hard-earned graduation ceremony this year.

I feel horrible for all the younger generation for having their own version of The Plague during what should be a time of discovery, growth, and celebration of life before having to settle into a life of adult responsibilities.

I feel afraid of what could be yet to come, but hopeful that things will get better.

I have faith in God, and pray for humanity every day, but still go over all the other things in my mind almost constantly.

Mostly, I feel tired.

So no, Mr. Spock, I don’t agree that the question is irrelevant, but I do know that even you eventually discovered that, and in the end, you sent a message to your mother. A message I hope we will all echo soon.

56919809-873E-4A12-AEF8-AFF5E0BD7A94

Blessings In Disguise 

Some of you already knows I’m a writer at heart, and am working on writing a book. It’s been an ongoing process for several years. Hey, don’t laugh! It took J.K. Rowling six years to write Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone, which of course became Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. Personally, I like the original title better, but that’s just me. Anyway…. some time ago, I’d been praying for the time to write my book, because being a wife and mom who has a full time job and is also a full time student, was just sucking all my free time up, leaving no time or energy for writing. I also knew even then that I had a call to share the goodness of God with people, I just wasn’t sure how exactly.

Well it just occurred to me, that my prayers have been answered in the most odd way I could have imagined. Because of an ankle injury, I’ve been off work for several months now, and though I’m continuing my pursuit of a college degree, I’ve also had the time I need to work on my book.

It’s been a really tough situation without my regular pay check, and being denied for Workers Compensation. There have been interviews with investigators, depositions with lawyers, a multitude of medical examinations and procedures. And the pain involved with this type of injury is absolutely debilitating. It’s been a very rough road.

There have been days when we had no food in the house at all, but suddenly family or friends would just bring us food or send money to grocery shop, or pay rent or utility bills to restore services that had been disconnected. Amazing things keep happening and things are working out. One blessing is that this fellowship has come to life and I’m so blessed to be able to share things with you what the Lord has given me to write. I’m so grateful to the Lord for His grace and mercy, in taking care of me and my family during this difficult time.

One lesson I’ve learned here is that you need to be very specific when praying for something! Now, I’m not saying God caused the injury at all. BUT…. He can USE it as an opportunity for the fulfillment of my prayers. He’s pretty cool like that!

You may remember the story of Joseph in the bible. His brothers were terribly jealous of him because of how much his father loved and favored him, so they plotted to kill him. One brother didn’t want to go through with it, and talked his brothers into leaving Joseph in a pit instead. Still not great, but at least not dead, so there was still an opportunity for something good to happen. And it did!

After what seemed like a hopeless situation to Joseph for years, he was suddenly elevated to what would otherwise be impossible levels and actually saved the lives of many, many people by doing what God told him to do! His faith in God combined with his obedience to God, caused him to go from being abandoned in a pit to being the kinds right hand man in charge of the kingdom itself, thereby using his God given skills to save a multitude of people from the devastation of severe drought and famine that lasted seven long years!

When Joseph was finally reunited with his family, he had a rough time, but forgave them, saying, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” Genesis50:20-21.

God is good, is he not?! All the time!!!

So if you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation, think about the possible reasons, and allow God to use it for good. You may just be amazed at how much you will be blessed in the long run!

As always, I pray this today’s message is a blessing to you! In Jesus’ name, amen!

Rev. Crystal Bennett

God’s Saving Grace

Good Morning, Family & Friends! I’ll tell you, we’ve had a rough time of things lately, and have struggled quite a bit. The thing is… no matter how bad the situation has looked, God has always been there to help us and has never left us. We wouldn’t be here today without His goodness and mercy. I am so grateful to family members who’ve been there for us and allowed the Lord to work through them, and I know that the combination of them being such wonderful people, and God being the wonderful, loving, caring father he is… well… things keep working out, and we are so blessed.

So I thought this morning, I would just share that with you and let you know that no matter what your situation is, if you stay in faith and keep doing your best to be obedient to God — which doesn’t mean you have to be totally perfect, it just means you really need to do your personal best to do God’s will in your life — you will see His favor and He will help you in your time of need, whatever that need may be!
Remember the story of Daniel and the Lion’s Den? Daniel was thrown into a den of hungry, man-eating lions, because he would not stop worshiping God and worship the king instead. But Daniel stayed obedient to God and stayed in faith, and the lions — hungry as they were — never touched him! THAT is amazing and a wonderful example of God’s grace and mercy! You and I have that blessing too! God loves you just as much as he loved Daniel, and He never puts one person above another. You are just as important to Him as anyone else. If you will put God first in your life, and never waver from that, you too will have the protection of God. It’s that simple.
As always, I pray this message is a blessing to you in Jesus’ name, and if it is, please share it with your family and friends 🙂
Rev. Crystal

Shelter Me

psalm7_1Good Morning Family & Friends! Today, I’d like to share with you one of my absolute favorite songs. Now I’m honesty not a fan of Christian music, and to see the lyrics you’d think that’s what this is. It may very well be considered such, but this is an awesome rockin’ blues song with a mean guitar riff, and it sums up how I feel about the Lord, so give it a listen. Those of you who’ve watched the TV show Sons of Guns have already heard part of it, because they used it for their theme, however it’s not about guns, which I honestly have no problem with when used responsibly! Okay, the caffeine has officially kicked in, so I’m gonna leave this right here. Have a very blessed day!

Shelter Me – by Tab Benoit (click to see the video & hear the song!)

The earth can shake the sky come down*
The mountains all fall to the ground
But I will fear none of these things
Shelter me lord underneath your wings

Dark waters rise and thunder pounds
The wheels of war are going round
And all the walls are crumbling
Shelter me lord underneath your wings
Shelter me lord underneath your wings

Hide me underneath your wings
Hide me deep inside your heart
In your refuge – cover me
The world can shake
But lord I’m making you my hiding place

The wind will blow the rain can pour
The deluge breaks the tempest roars
But in the storm my spirit sing
Oh shelter me lord underneath your wing
Shelter me lord underneath your wing

Hide me underneath your wings
Hide me deep inside your heart

In your refuge – cover me
The world can shake
But lord I’m making you my hiding place

Now on the day you call for me
Someday when time – no more shall be
I’ll say death where is your sting
Shelter me lord underneath your wing
Shelter me lord underneath your wing

Hide me underneath your wings
Hide me deep inside your heart
In your refuge – cover me
The world can shake
But lord I’m making you my hiding place

Now on the day you call for me
Someday when time – no more shall be
I’ll say oh death where is your sting
Oh shelter me lord underneath your wings
I say shelter me lord underneath your wing
Shelter me lord underneath your wing

You Can Do All Things

il_fullxfull.346402810.jpgGood morning, family & friends! Today’s message is short but direct. Remember that you are a child of God and as such, you are not alone. You have the ability to overcome whatever battles may be in your life, because you have the Lord on your side. Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” – Jesus is Lord and gives us His strength. I pray God protects you, heals you, forgives your sins, and keeps you strong – In Jesus’ name – Amen!