Reflections of a Christian Nurse Working in the NHS
Hello, my name is Eileen, and some of you may know me as the person who produces the Christmas and Easter cards for Revelation TV. What you may not know is that I am also a nurse. At these extraordinary and challenging times I thought some people may find it interesting if I outlined my role as a nurse, and how I use my faith not only for my own personal strength and protection but also for that of my colleagues and the patients many of whom of course are not practicing Christians.
Of all the professions, nursing has one of the strongest claims to being rooted almost uniquely in Christianity. Yet, modern nursing today is somewhat distanced in it’s theory and philosophy from Christianity. However, for me nursing is an ideal profession to incorporate and demonstrate God's love to those around us. Whether it is providing encouragement to co-workers or to a patient in need, as nurses we have the opportunity of sharing God's love with others.
I first registered as a Nurse at St Thomas’s Hospital, London over 30 years ago before specialising as a Children’s Nurse at Great Ormand Street. After an extended career break to raise a family and support my husband with his Military career I decided in 2018 to return to the profession.
I believe that nursing in the NHS matters now more than ever, particularly in the very challenging circumstances we are currently facing with the outbreak of Corona Virus. When working in an environment surrounded by unpredictability and distress it is not uncommon to hear hostility at times towards God. However I try and counter act this by my care and compassion to the patients and their families who are both vulnerable and frightened. Yes, we are trained to provide clinical care but I try and approach work with a holistic approach which has my faith at the core.
As a Christian nurse I also cannot overestimate the importance of starting my day with prayer. This commences before I get out of bed in the morning and continues throughout the day, asking for the Lord’s help with facing difficult issues and importantly thanking Him for the things that go well and always trusting His Will in all situations. I also ensure that before I enter the hospital I daily put on the armour of God (Ephesians 6 v 18); having done so I feel confident to face whatever challenges the shift ahead may throw at me.
Whilst praying and asking God to show me my purpose through this season of ‘Corona Virus’ He gave me a vision of an apple tree. He then revealed more and used the example to remind me that as Christians we will be known by our good fruit (Matthew 7:15-20).
The Fruits of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) are love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. These are the seeds that the Lord sewed in us when we become born again. For me this happened 18 years ago and, through trials and adversities the seeds have had the chance to grow and mature, I believe, for a time such as this, to stand prepared for any potential onslaught that lies ahead.
I love nursing as it ticks every box for me. It is a career that allows me to utilise natural gifts for a greater purpose, all the while fulfilling Christ's call to serve others.
It is one of the most challenging professions, but it's also one of the most personally fulfilling and rewarding granting me an amazing opportunity to care for people indiscriminately whilst endeavouring to make a ‘Godly’ difference to their lives whilst passionately serving the Lord.
Praying you keep safe and well at this difficult time.
01 Apr 2020