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ss spotlight - Winter 2021,  counting  the numbers game

counting the numbers game

Aditya Naidu reminds us that God does not count as we do

In this day and age, our lives are governed by numbers, and we, as nurses, are not immune to it. It's fascinating how important numbers are for us. Especially as an ITU nurse, I have been conditioned to the extent that living by numbers is a habit, a subconscious act.

On a typical day at work, I am engrossed with information like what size endotracheal tube my patient has and the FiO2, PEEP, and Pressure support. How about Saturation? Heart rate? Temperature? How many micrograms per kilo per hour is Norad running at? What is my patient's GCS? Any idea on the BMs? What's the RASS score? How many invasive lines and drains are there per square meter of my patient's body? How many mils was the urine output? Bowel openings today? Type of stool, 5-6-7? How many desperate calls from the family? Truthfully, a thousand more objective observations can be added to this list. I do this every day, judging my patients based on numbers, prioritising and planning my care.

We are in the numbers game.

On a fine day at work, while noting down observations, it occurred to me - what if God would one day change his mind and start assessing us based on numbers? How many times did I sin today? Was I faithful and honest to God? How many deeds of kindness were added to my account? How many minutes in prayers did I spend? How many chapters of the Bible did I read? What amount did I give for his ministry and church?

If this became a reality, I wish the earth would swallow me up first. The chasm created by the abysmal numbers between our Holy, Holy, Holy God and me would be unfathomable.

What an imperfect match, Jesus and me. I often stop thinking about closing this gap, craving my sinful life, and then the Spirit of God reminds me, aren't the very hairs on my head numbered? Jesus taught us to forgive our brothers seventy-seven times, so how much more he being God and Father, can and will forgive us? Probably infinite times.

Didn't he feed the five thousand with only five loaves of bread and two fish in the wilderness? Then why am I worried about the balance in my bank account? Weren't the widow's two mites greater than the entire wealth of Israel? Doesn't it show he is hungry for hearts and not money pots? Didn't he die on the cross bearing the wrath of God for zillions of people from the first-born Adam to the last to be born?

His grace is greater than my works.

He defeated death on the third day and then met the twelve to give them the one comforter he had promised. Yes, his love for us is incomputable. He completed his transaction, took our sins, and gave us his righteousness. What's left in my account of sins now? Zero.

Jesus is not in the numbers game. He is in the Love game. Champion!

Aditya Naidu is an ITU Nurse in the East Midlands

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