April 7, 2010
. . . there is nothing new under the sun. Is there anything of which one can say, "Look! This is something new"? It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time. Ecclesiastes 1:9b-10
You've heard that old expression -- "death with dignity."
Well, some people are more concerned about having a hospital stay with dignity. One individual involved in a project addressing this said, "Patients in hospitals are at their very lowest ebb, and you want them confident and buoyant so they can ask doctors the questions they need to ask."
Now, if you were listening carefully, you just heard the word "project." Let me tell you about the project.
Designers were given $37,500 to develop prototypes for products that would increase the dignity of hospital patients.
There were all kinds of ideas returned. One was a recovery chair that resembled the first-class seats on an airplane. That wasn't a hard one to guess. It came from the design team of Virgin Atlantic Airlines.
Probably the most applauded idea had to do with the traditional hospital gown. The back gap was replaced by gowns that snapped down the side. There were other gowns, gowns with cell phone holders and a matching snuggly blanket.
I imagine that sort of thing would give people dignity; I suppose that would lift someone up who was at his lowest ebb.
Of course, there are others who say -- that while these things may be important -- they are only superficial. If we really want to be lifted up, we must go to the Savior.
Jesus knew how to give people those things they really needed. Read through the Scriptures and you will see how Jesus touched a leper because a human touch would lift up that man. When a great sinner was brought to Jesus, He forgave, spoke words of encouragement, and set them free to live a life of thanksgiving.
Jesus gives a person what he needs: forgiveness, hope, peace, joy, and a reunion in heaven. The Savior's victorious life, death, and resurrection show us His qualifications and abilities, and they also show us how much we should love Him.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, for giving us what we really need, our thanks. For lifting us up, for providing for our needs, for living, dying, and rising so we might be given what we need most -- faith, the forgiveness of sins, and salvation -- we give You thanks. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries