Some time ago, my wife was in the middle of a 12-hour nursing shift in the critical care unit at Seton. One of the other nurses asked her about switching with one of her patients. "I'll take your hardest patient if you would take this one", her coworker pleaded. After returning from a 30-min lunch break, the family didn’t feel like mom was getting good enough care and didn’t want to cooperate with this particular nurse. (For the record, this nurse followed all the right protocols.) Laurel agreed to the switch, apologized for some miscommunication, and finished out the shift without incident. She was even assigned this same patient the next couple of shifts. Not surprisingly, it was uneventful. The patient and her family was cooperative and even pleasant. 

So, what happens when we feel out of control and all we want to do is see things better? Oftentimes, the only way we know how to express concern is be offended or hurl accusation. In this case, the patient's family felt helpless with their mother's health. They couldn't make her better. All they knew to do was express their concern through hurt and blame. The emotion was real and the reaction even understandable. Yet, as my wife-in-the-middle of both sides objectively said,…their mom was actually in good care the whole time. 

Fear and uncertainty make it hard to see. We are a divided country but not without hope. I believe God remains in control even when we feel out of control. In light of this emotional election week, I offer you a meditation as both a poem and a prayer. Read and re-read as needed this week.  

What To Do In The Darkness by Marilyn Chandler McEntyre.
Go slowly
Consent to it
But don't wallow in it
Know it as a place of germination
And growth
Remember the light
Take an outstretched hand if you find one
Exercise unused senses
Find the path by walking it
Practice trust
Watch for dawn.