When is it appropriate to share faith at work?: One nurse's story - page 4

As nurses, we wear many hats. To name a few: we are caregivers, providers, assessors, comforters, encouragers, teachers, an ear to listen. Are we to be evangelists or preachers? In my opinion, no and....yes. I believe that it is... Read More

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    My father was hospitalized and visited by the minister of the church we belonged to but my father never set foot in other than weddings and funerals. He was a farmer and his spiritual life was more communing in the open air rather than in a building. That is not to say he was not Christian. He was.

    This minister started talking about the open arms of Christ waiting for him at the Pearly Gates. I almost threw the man out of the hospital room. My father was not dying. Christ would have to wait at those pearly gates for a while longer and if the minister wanted to offer comfort or whatever. It would have been much better to offer a prayer for healing.

    This really soured me on a great deal of the talk of afterlife. It also soured me on quotes from the Bible. Speak your piece, not spout the words out of context. Religion is a tool to live by. For me it is not life. We use our faith to live a better life and help others to live a better life. It is not to criticize and decide who is a real "believer". To think one knows what God sees and knows is well beyond the scope of human life.

    I think there is a great role in faith being a healer. It is not up to the nurse to push faith. They follow the direction of those who offer their faith as a part of their healing. To do otherwise is to push a chain.
    OCNRN63 and BCgradnurse like this.

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    Quote from leslie :-D
    WRONG answer.
    you would NOT tell a dying patient in spiritual distress/crisis, that they may be doomed to everlasting destruction!!!
    some of these folks have already spoken with the hospice chaplain, have fervently prayed and are still questioning their faith...their beliefs!!
    so HELL no, you would never never never insinuate anything remotely terrifying to a pt in crisis.
    NEVER.
    yes, i got incredibly upset by your response.
    please, do not work with the dying.
    i know you mean well, but that has to be one of the scariest responses i've ever seen.

    i'm done here.

    leslie
    Leslie, why do you get so offended by my posts? First of all, in your quote, you've removed John 3:16. Was this intentional?

    I said my conversation would be to a "Christian". A Christian is anyone who believes that Christ was the Son of God. I NEVER said I would tell anyone that they will experience the wrath of God. Especially not in the workplace. I simply said that if I were talking to another "Christian". In another post of mine on this thread I was emphatic about NOT sharing the gospel to ANYONE in the workplace, unless asked. In my opinion, I think it's okay to have a discussion, if one is asked.

    You said that you don't share your beliefs, even if asked, but you certainly shared your "belief" about not believing in God's wrath. Seriously? You said in your post that "at these times, that i would share my (non-denominational and spiritual) beliefs...", but then you go on to say, other than to try and comfort those who were suffering, i have never shared my beliefs..."

    I apologize, but I will always defend my posts. I mean no harm.

    So, if I had a dying patient, who was a Christian and they asked me about eternal life or God's wrath (yes, many Christians are frghtened about God's wrath and they shouldn't be) I would simply, in a humbled manner, tell them not to worry, because by believing in Christ, as the Son of God, they will live for eternity and that they don't have to worry about God's wrath.

    Nowhere in my post did I say I would ever tell anyone that they are appointed to God's wrath. I would only have this conversation with a patient who simply asked me and of course, it was established that they are a Christian.

    I'm sorry, but I'm not sure what I said to have offended you. You're making me feel bad, because you seem to have taken my post out of context.
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    I pray every morning on my way to work that God will guide my hands and guard my mouth so that I cause no harm to my patients. I ask him to make me knowledgeable in the gift he has bestowed on my. I also let my patients lead the way. There are a few that start a conversation regarding some things that are against what is in Bible. I politely let them know although my feelings are different, I respect their right to feel their way also. I have never had anyone get mad that I know of. I have also prayed with people while their loved one has taken their last breath and yes like them I cry, hug and comfort them as best I know how. Loving my Savior, sharing with people who are requesting prayers is one great thing about my job.
    FSUNurse2b and aknottedyarn like this.
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    Quote from BCgradnurse
    I know for sure, if you ever started quoting hellfire and damnation to me, a family member, or another patient ("believer" or "non-believer") I would be right in front of your Director of Nursing demanding your termination. That's completely and utterly inappropriate.
    I really want to be a nurse. I'm confident I can handle the pressure, since I see the world for what it is, you know, all the "bad" things that happen to people. I won't share how or why I see the world for what it is, but just that I do and I believe that will equip me for the job.

    Not to sound redundant, but if a Christian patient asks me about eternal life or hell, what's wrong with telling them not to worry because they have already "believed"? I think why you mentioned you would try and have me terminated, is because you misunderstood that my post said I would be preaching God's wrath on non-believers. Far, far from the case. I didn not say that, nor could my post be misconstrued that way.

    So, if a Christian patient asked me about eternal life and God's wrath and I simply said not to worry, because as a believer, they will have eternal life, and you heard this, you would try and have me terminated???

    I sincerely hope this would not be the case.

    I thank you for your suggestion about not to purse nursing, but I am determined. I never have nor ever will use my place of employment as a tool for evangelizing. I current work in wealth management and have been with my bank for 7 years and have never done this!!!
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    FSUN, Thank you for sharing you, rather than quotes.
    It is easy to be misinterpreted when you put your intentions into the quotes.

    Curiosity: What would you tell a non-Christian about afterlife? If asked about beliefs about what happens after he or she dies are you able to not say anything about your beliefs? Do you feel the need to tell them about what you believe happens to Christians when they die?
    leslie :-D likes this.
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    Quote from FSUNurse2b
    Nowhere in my post did I say I would ever tell anyone that they are appointed to God's wrath. I would only have this conversation with a patient who simply asked me and of course, it was established that they are a Christian.
    Quote from FSUNurse2b
    And, I would, in the most "humbled" manner, reassure them with these wonderful Words:

    2 Thessalonians 1:7-10
    This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. 8 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might 10 on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you.
    yes, i readily admitted i was upset/offended by your post and thought i explained why but you still don't seem to understand.
    again, when a pt is in crisis (spiritual), they are questioning their faith.
    they are questioning whether they believe or not.
    and so, it is not the time to preach gospel.
    and once again, i took offense by the passage below...that talks of everlasting destruction.
    all other quotes have been removed as to focus on what it was that you should never share with a pt...
    yet in your own words, you stated you would.

    i cannot get into detail but i am recalling one particular patient who had preached the word his entire life.
    yet on his deathbed, he believed his life to be a bad script, a farce...
    he was condemning himself for not following his very own thoughts that often conflicted with his faith.
    (yes, i have heard very similar conversations from other Christians as well.).

    i stand by my response to you fsu, as i believe at this time, you're not understanding the fragility, confusion, angst, and vulnerability of pts who are dying.
    you cannot establish anyone as a Christian (or any other religion) unless/until they staunchly identify themselves as such.
    when pts are in crisis, they are not identifying with their religion at all.
    it is a very precarious time.
    and keep in mind, i could/did have conversations with these pts, after being in an ongoing and intimate relationship with them.
    we spent lots and lots of quality time together.

    and to clarify, i do not share my faith with my pts.
    i thought i had said that.
    to all others, sure, i think many know i'm very spiritual.
    *shrugs*
    my point was that i don't share that part of myself with my pts.

    i do hope you reread what you posted to me (about the words you would share with a pt) and hopefully you will see why i reacted as i did.

    thanks.

    leslie
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    Quote from aknottedyarn
    FSUN, Thank you for sharing you, rather than quotes.
    It is easy to be misinterpreted when you put your intentions into the quotes.

    Curiosity: What would you tell a non-Christian about afterlife? If asked about beliefs about what happens after he or she dies are you able to not say anything about your beliefs? Do you feel the need to tell them about what you believe happens to Christians when they die?
    That's a really good question. I guess I would just avoid talking about afterlife, altogether. As much as I would LOVE to have a quiet conversation about the gospel, I know the workplace is just not the place, unless of course I knew my patient was a Christian and it was them who opened the conversation.

    So, I don't think I would talk to a non-Christian about afterlife. And if they asked me, well, I'm not sure. I'm still stuck in the banking world and my clients just don't ask those questions. Sure, I have clients who are Christians, but the conversation about the gospel has never come up, nor do I think it will within the next couple years I have left in this industry.

    Do you think it would be appropriate to tell a non-Christian who asks what I believe, to tell them what "I" believe? I only ask, because they would be the one asking. I'm not sure about this. There's no way I'm going through all these pre-reqs (with a pregnant wife), an accelerated BSN program, only to have someone try and get me terminated because they "think" my motivation is to preach the gospel. And I KNOW it could be misconstrued that way, so probably better to completely refrain from the conversation with all non-Christians.
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    Quote from leslie :-D
    yes, i readily admitted i was upset/offended by your post and thought i explained why but you still don't seem to understand...

    ...i do hope you reread what you posted to me (about the words you would share with a pt) and hopefully you will see why i reacted as i did.
    No need to get upset. This is a thread about sharing faith with patients in the workplace. The OP is a Chrisitan and she doesn't think it's a good idea to do so, within the workplace. And I agree with her! UNLESS, I am absolutely sure my patient is a Christian (a believer) and he/she initiates the conversation. PERIOD. And I would (I hope) feel absolutely comfortable sharing, that as a believer, they will have eternal life and in no, way, shape or form will experience God's wrath. I believe I have every right to discuss this with a patient (in the above referenced situation).

    I "assume" you feel that this is wrong. Okay. That's your affair. So be it. It is what it is.

    If you're a mom, I hope you have a good Mother's Day!
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    Quote from she57
    I pray every morning on my way to work that God will guide my hands and guard my mouth so that I cause no harm to my patients. I ask him to make me knowledgeable in the gift he has bestowed on my. I also let my patients lead the way. There are a few that start a conversation regarding some things that are against what is in Bible. I politely let them know although my feelings are different, I respect their right to feel their way also. I have never had anyone get mad that I know of. I have also prayed with people while their loved one has taken their last breath and yes like them I cry, hug and comfort them as best I know how. Loving my Savior, sharing with people who are requesting prayers is one great thing about my job.
    This was very comforting and reassuring. I think you're response to those who start a conversation in that manner, is appropriate.

    Your last statement, about loving your Savior and sharing with people who are requesting prayers is one great thing about your job, put a huge smile on my face! It gives me much courage as I pursue a career into nursing!

    Thank you!!!
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    I think that your light should shine through your actions and through your comportment. Words are just... words.

    And words of a religious nature, should not, in my opinion, be initiated by the healthcare provider.
    Rose_Queen, leslie :-D, aknottedyarn, and 1 other like this.


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