Written by Elaine Lankford
There I stood, mouth gaping open, heart pounding, head starting to throb as I listened to the words coming out of his mouth: “The practice is closed, we can’t see any more patients.” In disbelief, I stood stunned.
In 2008, after almost sixteen years in nursing, with three and a half of them spent as a nurse practitioner, my career came to screeching halt. The events of that day are forever burned in my memory. The pain management practice I worked for was shut down, and the provider who supervised me suspended from practice. Within weeks, I would be not only jobless, but also swept up into a malpractice claim that made absolutely no sense.
It made no difference that the facts of case screamed innocence. In essence, I was guilty by association. Career finished, reputation smeared beyond repair. After years of higher education, not to mention the cost of that schooling, it was over.
To add insult to injury, I would bury my father a few short months later after a sudden car accident. And then, just when I thought things couldn’t get worse, a year later my husband was diagnosed with cancer.
And in the depths of my despair, I would cry out to God from the innermost parts of my heart: “Where are you?”
No one ever plans for their life to include the heartbreaking interruptions like the kind I found myself bombarded by so many years ago. No, we choose to focus on the beautiful pieces and parts that bring us joy and peace. But Christ plainly warns us, life is not without heartache. However, at the end of His warning, He provides comfort.
“…Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 NLT
Yet in the day-to-day struggle of a trial or temptation, we don’t really feel like praising Him, do we? And yet, that is what we are called to do.
Though He slay me, yet I will trust Him. Job 13:15 NKJV
I want to encourage you today that there are three keys to going through a trial and coming out a better person afterwards.
- Learning to REACH for the Savior.
- Ensuring that you are in a RELATIONSHIP with Jesus.
- Seeking true REVELATION from God concerning what our purpose is here on earth.
I believe God allowed the things I experienced to happen not as a way to punish me, but to bring me back in line with His will. He does this out of love. Having been a Christian all my life, I realized that somewhere along the way I was letting my relationship with Jesus go to the back burner. It is really hard to serve Jesus and yourself at the same time, wouldn’t you agree?
And so God took me and brought me to a point that I would finally look up at Him and reach for Him…Read More
Elaine is an author, blogger, and speaker. Elaine’s book, Love Echoed Back: I Cried Out; He Answered provides more detail to the story above as well as the life lessons God imparted to her during these tumultuous time.
As a long standing member of Believers Church, she serves as a small group leader, a member of the prayer team, and co-organizer/co-lead of the Nicaragua missions team.
Professionally, Elaine has been in the nursing profession for over twenty years. She dedicated the first half of her nursing career to the field of Oncology and the second half to the area of Pain Management. In 2005, she became a certified family nurse practitioner. In the last several years, she has transitioned out of the clinical arena into a nonclinical advisory role in the area of medical record documentation, coding, and auditing.
Elaine was born and raised in Suffolk, Virginia and continues to reside there with Darrell, her husband of 23 years. They have one son, Nicholas, who is currently a senior in high school. They also enjoy the company of their ‘adopted’ grandson, Bradley.
It is Elaine’s greatest desire that everyone attain the kind of life Jesus has called us to and that they come to know the depths of the Savior’s love. If you cry out, He will answer!
Visit Elaine online at www.elainelankford.com
If you would like to write for the upcoming series, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org