In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand
In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save
'Till on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live
There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin's curse has lost it's grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ
No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
'Till He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand
Lyrics copyright 2001 Kingsway/Thankyou Music
We sang this song this morning in church. It was especially moving today. I was particularly struck by the line that "sin's curse has lost it's grip on me". It's hard to feel that, but the truth is there. Jesus' death paid for all of my sin - and I no longer live in bondage to it.
Another interesting event in church today: I spoke to one of the nurses who cared for me when I was in the hospital back in 2005. First, a little background: My migraines really got terrible in August 2005. I had 2 hospitalizations in August to try to break migraines. During those stays, we tried DHE and some other unpleasant meds. In September, the family and I went to a medical conference for a few days. We left early because of my migraines. When we got back in to town, I called my partner on call (it was Saturday) and he suggested that we try hospitalization with an iv narcotic drip. I thought this sounded great because I needed to get back to work Monday (crazy, huh?).
During the night that I was on the narcotic, I stopped breathing and the nurse who found me called a Code Blue. I recall waking up to hearing the voice of the ER doctor saying, "Prepare for cardioversion". What!? I felt this terrible heaviness in my chest and shortness of breath. I opened my eyes and saw a heart monitor that showed supraventricular tachycardia with a rate of about 170. I realized that I was the one on the monitor! Surprisingly, I vividly recall that I had a very coherent thought: "Cough. Cough to convert back into sinus rhythm and they won't have to cardiovert." I have no idea how I could think something that made so much sense. Anyway, I started coughing, and then the doctor and nurses encouraged me to continue. Within a minute or two, I had converted to sinus tachycardia at about 140. They quit talking about electricity - thank you, Lord! Anyway, the next few minutes were taken up with getting ABGs drawn and a CXR done. I kept telling them to call my husband, but they wouldn't call him until things were pretty settled down - i.e. when I was on my way to the ICU.
After a few minutes, they wheeled me to the ICU (it's a 40 bed hospital - the trip to ICU is very short, and there are only 4 ICU beds). When we got there, I started to pray and asked if anyone could please pray with me. My nurse was trying to get stuff hooked up, but she finally said, "OK. How about if we say the 'Our Father'?" That was fine with me. I was scared, P wasn't there with me, and all I wanted was someone else to pray with me. So, we did the "Our Father" together. P arrived soon after, and he spent much time in prayer!! The official cause of my apnea was narcotic overdose, but the dose of medication wasn't very high. Now that I know about my sleep apnea, I suspect that I became apneic at a lower than expected dose because of the obstructive sleep apnea. When I was coded, they gave me lots of Narcan, and I think that caused the SVT. In any case, I spent the next day in the ICU getting intermittent doses of Narcan. My headache came back, so they let me have some oral meds. It turns out that I had aspirated during the event, so I had a couple week recovery from that. I took a three month leave from work for headaches, etc. I only went back to work for three months before I had to quit for good.
What does that have to do with church today?? The nurse that prayed with me in the ICU goes to our church, although she goes early so I rarely see her. She told me today that my time in the ICU was the first time that she had ever prayed with a patient - she had always been taught to separate faith from work. Now, she often asks patients if she can pray with them, especially when she is working med flights. She also said she thought I was very brave - I wasn't really, but I'm glad she thought so. Anyway, I do not want to relive that event, but I was excited to hear that it had a positive impact on someone else's life - and through her, other people's lives. Isn't God totally cool?
"Here in the power of Christ I stand" is my prayer.