“What is it, Doc, is it serious?” the patient asks anxiously.
“Well, let me listen to your heart one more time. Ahhmmmm. Just as I thought. . .it’s your thoughts.”
“WHAT! Are you crazy? It is NOT my thoughts. I know exactly what I have been thinking, and it is NOT my thoughts. I have these terrible symptoms, and there simply is no way that it is my thoughts. My thoughts are my thoughts, and my symptoms are my symptoms. That is ridiculous. Where did you even get your license to doctor, anyway?”
The doctor glances over at her degree on the wall, raising an eyebrow, and looks back at the patient. The patient looks over his shoulder at the framed degree and then back at the doctor. “Well, maybe there was this one little thought that came to me this morning when I looked into my bank account. So what if for a moment I was wondering if we would have enough to make it until the next paycheck. Everybody does that.”
The doctor patiently requests, “Would you tell me your symptoms again, please”
“Well, I just started feeling down early this morning right after breakfast, and then it got worse. I felt overwhelmed, frustrated, and then outright depressed.”
“Hmmmmmm. And when was it you looked at your bank account balance?”
“Well, it was right after breakfast, but I. . .”
“I see, and what else have you been thinking about today?”
“Well, I haven’t been thinking about it, but my kids are in trouble, my kitten ran away, I may lose my job, and I’m not getting along with my wife, but I haven’t been thinking about any of that. Then of course, I did for a minute have a tiny thought about the situation in the Middle East and the state of the economy, and my football team lost again last night. Just because nothing, absolutely nothing is going right in my life, doesn’t mean I’ve been thinking about it. Tell me the truth, Dr. Sharon, am I going to die? Is there anything you can do for me?”
“Yes, you probably are going to die. . .eventually. And there is absolutely nothing I can do for you. I wish I could, and I wish I could do something for all of my patients.” Looking wistfully away, “I wish I could give every one of you clean and right thinking.”
“So, doc, there’s no hope for me, then?”
Dr. Sharon looks surprised, and her face brightens some, “Oh, there’s hope for you all right! Think about that for a minute. I’ll be right back.”
When the doctor returns with a diet coke, and one for the patient, she is greeted with a smile, “Doc, there is hope for me and there is hope for the world! My bank account is not completely empty, and my kids are going to be okay. I’ll put up posters to find the kitten. I’m probably not going to lose my job this week. My wife is a sweetheart, and she’s a good cook AND no more watching the news for me! I feel great! Doc, you’re a genius! Have a good day! I’ll see you at the racquetball club!”
Dr. Sharon rubs her chin, and shakes her head.
Now sure enough, we are going to have some negative thoughts. Sometimes, there’s very good reason to have them. The kitten really does run away or something much worse happens, and you just can’t get your hope back. That’s what God is for. That’s why He gave you family and friends and His Word and fun, encouraging things to read. There’s always hope!
Have a really great day!