These are just some of the things patients have said:
- "The Lord promised in his Word that He will never leave us or forsake us. He's always by our side, and there's a reason for everything, even if the only reason is to strengthen our relationship with Him."
- "I know I'm going to get better, but it will only be with the help of the Lord."
- "I have been improving a little bit every single day, and I owe it all to the Lord."
- "Every good thing comes from God."
- When asking a 100+ year old the secret to living to 100: "I have put God first throughout my whole life, and in return he has been so good to me. I wake up every morning and thank him for waking me up to see a new day and for helping me with everything I need to do."
- There are frequent exclamations of "God is so good," "Praise the Lord," and "Thanks be to God!"
- There are also frequent prayers: "Please Lord, just help me do this!" And these prayers are said in a sincere way, not how some people exclaim things like "God help us all!"
I don't know whether it's because of their age and experiences or because of their culture, but these adults have no inhibitions about sharing their faith. There are no worries about whether or not they're talking to people who don't believe in God, and they have no fears of rejection. They share what's on their hearts, and they want everyone to see how good God is.
So why am I so reserved and timid about sharing my faith? I have no problem talking with my husband and close friends about it and sharing it on the Internet (I mean, duh, I have a blog), but why not in day to day conversations, even with people I don't know? Is it an age thing or a personality thing?
I guess part of it comes from worrying about imposing my faith on others who aren't believers and causing offense. But is it really imposing or offensive to share where my joy comes from? Sharing in a way that doesn't come off as you should believe this, but the way my patients go about doing it in showing how God is working in their lives.
While I obviously can't bring up religion on fieldwork unless a patient starts the conversation, I am trying to figure out how I can become more bold and fearless in sharing my faith. I suppose a start could be bringing it up with strangers. If a stranger congratulates me on my pregnancy, I could respond with something like "Thank you so much. God has truly blessed us!" Other than that, I am giving it some thought as to how I can be more open.
After all, we are all called to spread the Word.
"And he said to them 'Go forth to the whole world and preach the Gospel to every creature.' "
- Mark 16:15
How do you go about sharing your faith with others? Do you talk about your faith with strangers? Do you wait for someone else to bring it up before you talk about it?