Salt and Light
Jesus said: his followers are the “salt of the earth” (Matthew 5:13) and “Have salt within yourselves” (Mark 9:50). What did he mean? Salt brings out flavor, is used as a preservative, and purifies. In Jesus' day, salt was full of impurities that caused the salt to lose flavor. Rabbis used salt as a symbol for wisdom. Jesus was saying in order to be an effective disciple, we need to completely surrender to him, be pure, and be different (Mark 8:35–38; Luke 14:33–35). It is by our saltiness—our way of life, our purity, the Holy Spirit—that we bring glory to God and help people see Jesus.
How are others being salt and light in nursing? Students at Notre Dame College in Cleveland, Ohio sponsored a Lenten Evening of Reflection. At the University of North Carolina in Greensboro, NCF sponsored a Holistic Healing event. Nurses shared stories about healing they had witnessed in their careers and how God has been a part of it. A nurse in New Jersey contacted local medical centers and hospitals about empowering nurses to recognize victims of human trafficking. She began a petition so that early intervention strategies can be developed for those trapped by injustice. Find more stories and ideas in the NCF Blog at http://ncfnurses.wordpress.com/.
Connecting Faith and Nursing
God made you in a particular way and placed you in particular circumstances at this particular point in global history. Urbana 12, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship's tri-annual missions conference since 1946, is designed to help you figure out your place in God's story! Designed for 17- to 29-year olds, Urbana 12 will be held in St. Louis, Missouri, December 27–31, 2012. The cost is low to help as many college students at possible to attend.
A seminar series The Mission of Healthcare will help participants learn about God's mission through healthcare. Join 18,000 people and over 250 mission organizations working in 150 countries who are passionate about helping you join in God's global mission. Learn more, register, or donate to scholarships at https://urbana.org/
Discover God @ Work, NCF Blog, facebook, resources, and more at www.ncf-jcn.org
* Unique Networking: Two women recently had a long delay at Chicago's O'Hare airport. Sitting across from each other waiting at the flight gate, they struck up a conversation and learned both were nurses and NCF members! They ended up doing a prayer walk. One wrote to NCF, “We walked from gate to gate quietly praying for people we saw. Whatever God put on our hearts, we voiced back to him in prayer…The [delay] passed quickly. We ended up seated on opposite ends of the plane, but I sensed our combined prayers continued to be lifted to the Father. We marveled at how God brought us together to do his work.” NCF regularly hears about supernatural networking. Join and start networking today!
* CE Discounts: Learn how to obtain member 30% JCN and 25% NursingCenter.com CE discounts at http://www.ncf-jcn.org/jcn/lwwce.php. JCN offers 50 contact hours and there are over 1100 CE opportunities at NursingCenter.com.
* Journalofchristiannursing.com: A link to activate your online JCN account is sent to members via email from Lippincott when you join NCF. If you are an NCF member and can't access your JCN online account, contact LWW Member Services at (866) 489–0443 or memberservice@LWW.com
* Support Growth! There has been a 48% increase in 2012 in the number of core students involved in NCF chapters. Member dues help support ministry to these students.
Renee Lick, BSN, MA, RN, Student Ministries Director, Nurses Christian Fellowship USA
Renee Lick loves nursing. She's been a nurse for 10 years, working in adult ICU, telemetry, outpatient clinics, and as a camp nurse. Renee always knew she wanted to do something in healthcare and originally thought it was medicine. But that changed when she did a summer internship with a nurse practitioner at a Salvation Army clinic. “I noticed the way the NP focused on prevention and worked with patients to help them make changes to better their health. She didn't just treat symptoms but treated their whole lives. I felt God leading me into nursing. I'd never been so sure of anything in all my life.” After nursing school, Renee wanted to go where God would “challenge me. I didn't want to go where it would be easy; I wanted to be stretched.”
Renee has stretched herself, living cross culturally as a minority and working in underserved communities. She currently works p.r.n. at Lawndale Christian Health Center in the inner city of Chicago. Renee says, “I love seeing the ways God uses me unexpectedly and being able to offer whole person care.”
Renee joined NCF staff as a volunteer in 2003 and became NCF Campus Staff at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) in 2004. “I saw the need to help prepare students to be spiritually healthy and gain skills to offer spiritual care to their patients.” At UIC Renee dreamed about how student ministry could grow across the United States “Nursing students are gifted leaders. When they catch a vision, they are able to run with it and make it a reality.”
In 2008 Renee became NCF's first Student Ministries Director, overseeing student ministry nationally. Renee is clear about a vision for student ministry. “InterVarsity Christian Fellowship's vision is to see students and faculty transformed, campuses renewed, and world changers developed. As a strategic ministry of InterVarsity, we in NCF desire to see nursing students and faculty thrive as lifelong disciples of Jesus. We want them to discover their calling to be witnesses on campus. We envision campuses impacted by the presence of NCF chapters. As students graduate, they will impact the world through their care of patients and influence in the profession.”
What advice does Renee have for students and nurses? “Be open to where God is leading you. Live intentionally. We have such an opportunity as nurses to be with people during the hardest times in their lives. God wants to use Christian students and nurses to be a reminder of his presence.”
How can nursing students and faculty make an impact on campus?
NCF chapters at two campuses recently tried “prayer walks” for the first time. A prayer walk literally is walking around praying for the campus, pausing and praying for needs and people as you encounter them. Go in twos or threes; if you go in a larger group be careful to not overwhelm those you encounter.
What's important on a prayer walk? Keep your eyes open as you walk and pray, and when you stop and pray. This allows you to be observant, not appear strange, and not run into things! Don't be awkward. If you feel awkward, the people who see you and those you pray for will feel awkward. Don't pray for people without first requesting permission, and don't touch them without asking. When you encounter someone try saying, “Hi! We're with Nurses Christian Fellowship and are praying for the campus today. Is there anything you'd like us to pray for you? (pause) Would you like us to pray right now?” If they say no, ask “Would you mind if we prayed for you on our own later?” Keep prayers brief; be sensitive to time. Thank people for praying or talking with you.
Ask God to open your eyes. Some students saw the nursing department mission statement for the first time and prayed that the school's mission, along with God's mission, would be fulfilled. When they saw photos of prior graduates, they prayed for graduates and what God wanted current students to become. Others observed posters and flyers, learning what students are involved in. As they listened to prayer requests, they developed greater compassion for their fellow students and teachers and asked God to show them how to make a difference. They began to see places of need such as the skills lab or computer lab where tests are taken. For both chapters the prayer walk was inspiring and eye opening. Start regular prayer walks on your campus with one or more Christian friends. It will change you and your campus!
Support NCF ministry to over 108 campuses in the United States through prayer and financial gifts. Give at https://donate.intervarsity.org/ to “NCF Student Ministry.” Find a chapter and resources at http://www.ncf-jcn.org/student/main.php.