The alarm shattered what was an otherwise calm and routine day in the hospital. I was a third year medical student on my psychiatry rotation and was sequestered in an office, writing my progress notes on my patients I had just seen. Muffled shouts and the unmistakable sound of broken glass emerged from the hallway several yards away. I crept to the open door and looked in the direction to see a spray of water emerging from another corridor. A patient had grabbed the firehose and managed to turn on the water spraying everyone and everything in its torrential pathway. Other patients either cowered in fear or picked up any object that could be used for defense or a weapon.
I watched this surreal scene escalate. My first instinct was to run but I knew the only exit was through the same corridor. I was trapped. I quietly shut the door, turned off the lights, and huddled under the desk, anxiously listening for any movement outside the office. At that point, I did think this could end very badly, with myself or others getting hurt or even being killed. Thankfully, the security was able to control the situation with only minor injuries to the agitated patient and the other hospital staff and patients. I quickly exited from the office, relieved to be uninjured.
The Apostle Paul shared a distressing experience that brought him to a point when he feared he would die. Instead of cowering in fear like I did, Paul relied upon his faith in God.
…We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead.
2 Corinthians 1:8-9 (NLT)
How did God answer Paul?
And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us. And you are helping us by praying for us. Then many people will give thanks because God has graciously answered so many prayers for our safety.
2 Corinthians 1:10-11 (NLT)
When I was facing mortal danger, I panicked, relied upon my instincts, and retreated. When Paul faced death, He stood firm and relied upon God. Today, there are many Christians throughout the world who are suffering for their faith in Jesus Christ, some facing death. When the situation turns dire, they do not retreat and shrink from their faith, they embrace it and rely upon God’s power and not their own.
As Christians, we can support our brothers and sisters financially or through our occupations, but the most important support is praying to God on their behalf. God always answers prayers as He dramatically recorded in the Bible for the Apostle Paul.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.