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Monday, October 26, 2015

Care for the Dying

Care for the Dying.  The word Hospice (from hospitality) was originally a term used for a place where tired or sick travelers could find shelter and care. In 1948, it was applied to care for dying patients by Dr. Dame Saunders, and became a generally accepted term in 1963 when she presented her concept of specialized care at Yale. 
The online journal, Medical Daily, explains that palliative care for those suffering terminal conditions can "improve their quality of life by relieving pain and other symptoms," but there are substantial gaps in the provision of this care"At the end of 2014, 67 percent of hospitals with 50 beds or more had palliative care programs," this article reports. 
Although there has been great improvement, there is still limited access to palliative care for Americans today, especially in the Southern portion of the country.

Of the multitudes who came to Jesus for healing, tens of thousands were in conditions considered incurable and with little or no hope for care, comfort or support. No wonder they flocked him and pressed to touch him. One woman thought that if she could just come from behind him and touch the edge of his robe, she would be healed -- so great were the number of instantaneous healing occurring around him wherever he went. She touched, and immediately was healed of a chronic 'issue of blood.' Jesus said that her faith had made her whole (begin with Matthew 9:20).

WHAT TO DO. Finding oneself in a desperate situation with no access to palliative care does not mean no care is available, for Jesus said that the Christ would be with us "alway" (Matthew 28:20). One translation adds, "I will be with you always, day in and day out, as you will see." The Love that is God, and the Christ presence are with you every moment, no matter how threatening or hurtful a circumstance or condition may appear. Turn your attention to that loving Presence with a desire for comfort and healing such as the woman who touched his hem, and you are sure to experience some benefit of good, if not full relief. 

Gratitude for Love's presence and care makes the human circumstances conform to that truth. If there seems no care present, affirm (often, with feeling and trust) that the Christ is right with you, within and without, day and night, caring for your every need. It is like opening a closed door to let in the full sunlight that is just on the other side of it. Open consciousness a crack by this repeated affirmation and expectation of good, and the Christ-light will flood thought and create a better experience for you. Nothing and no one can separate you from the love of God and His care for you. This attitude and purposeful declaration of truth will adjust things in your behalf for good. Give gratitude and receive.

Paul writes, "For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, no height, nor depth, nor any other creature shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:39).

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