Tuesday, February 23, 2010


Man vs. Wild is The Show around our house.  Last night Bear Grylls trudged through snowdrifts, then stripped off his clothes and chopped his way, waist deep, through a frozen glacial river.  We got frost bite just watching it.  Though the camera blurred the appropriate appendages, the crew's jokes on shrinkage led to an interesting family explanation with our young boys.

The next day it hit me.  In the hospital nakedness is never about sport or sex.  It's about helplessness, loss, pain and vulnerability. 

In the trauma bay, clothes are cut off as the medical team rushes to save a life.
In a hospice room dementia causes an elderly woman to keep pulling her night gown over her head while her sons and grandchildren struggle to retain her modesty.
In well baby nursery several of us crowded around a fat, sleepy, naked baby to view a circumcision "procedure".

Nakedness is everywhere in the hospital, prompting these words during a recent debrief - "sometimes I don't know where to look."  Our supervisor replied "Maybe that's how the friends of Jesus felt gathered around the cross."

Silence.  Wow.  Our Jesus naked, helpless, hurting, vulnerable.  Another reason to look for His face in our patients.

I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'  Matthew 25:36

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