- LVN/LPN: Licensed Vocational/Practical Nurse
- ADN: Associate Degree in Nursing
- ASN: Associate of Science in Nursing
- BS, BSN: Bachelor of Science in Nursing
- Accelerated BSN: Post-bachelor's/second degree BSN
- MSN: Master of Science in Nursing
- MSN/MBA: Master of Science in Nursing/Master of Business Administration
- MSN/MSHA: Master of Science in Nursing/Master of Science in Healthcare Administration
- CAGS: Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies
- DNP: Doctor of Nursing Practice
- APRN: Advanced Practice Registered Nurse
- FNP: Family Nurse Practitioner
- CNS: Clinical Nurse Specialist
We live in a fast-paced, ever-changing world where, on average, general knowledge is doubling every 12 hours (Woodill, 2018). To give perspective, in the 1900s, knowledge doubled every 100 years. By the end of World War II, knowledge doubled every 25 years. With the rise of the Internet, the rapid doubling of knowledge is forcing us, whether we like it or not, to think and behave in new ways. The digital age is projected to totally reshape our future. This is reality worldwide. In the 1900s, Europe and the United States generated more than 90% of scientific publications. By the turn of the 21st century, the remaining part of the world was contributing up to 50% of scientific publications (Meige, 2017).
Educators are increasingly aware of the need to stay relevant in the phenomenal advances in knowledge. There is growing pressure to present more and more information, while teaching digital learning skills and literacy. Educators are required to become faster at learning new information and skillful in the use of unique learning tools and systems.
At the rate information is doubling, no one will be able to learn and remember even a fraction of the information required in his or her field of study. As current knowledge expands, it will take increasing time and effort to advance in a specified field.
Currently, the digitalization and globalization of healthcare information overwhelms practitioners and patients alike. Helpful resources are increasingly available to guide clinical practice. However, when confronted with the amount of healthcare information, nurses desiring to be life-long learners cannot run fast enough on the treadmill of knowledge to stay current. This can lead to disillusionment and burnout. Meanwhile, patients are actively searching for answers online, with many losing confidence in traditional healthcare practices that offer no hope or solutions for the challenges they face.
The establishment of the Directory of Christian Nursing Schools in North America is timely. Christian nursing education offers new ways of thinking and behaving that can transform students into relevant, life-changing healthcare practitioners, who make a difference in people's lives.
Christian nursing education provides a unique view on how to approach nursing. When a biblically based, Christian worldview is used as the guiding framework for nursing curricula, a paradigm shift occurs. Faith is used to inform a nurse's understanding of why, where, when, how, with whom, and in what spirit one serves within the profession. For example, Christian nurses recognize individual and professional accountability first to Christ, then to the public. As God's change agents, Christian nurses are called to serve others, being the hands and feet of Christ.
Christian nursing education helps students understand that no one person or group will ever have all the answers to the problems encountered, both personally and professionally. No matter how much education one receives, on our own, our knowledge is incomplete. Although many seek answers through the new digital age, Christian nurses learn to seek answers through cultivating a relationship with the God who holds all truth and knowledge.
Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV) are well-known verses that can help guide nurses in an era of information explosion and feelings of being overwhelmed: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” God says, “I am the LORD your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go,” Isaiah 48:17 (NIV). God can guide a nurse's steps through every situation. He delights in helping nurses who call on him in real time, to be efficient and effective in providing quality care that can make a significant difference in the people served!
Christian nursing education provides a nurturing environment, where Christ-followers are like-minded. Support and encouragement are provided to develop good habits and a godly lifestyle, thus equipping students for ministry and service. Indeed, Christian educators in every setting can offer such support to students. Christian nurses can be a light in a dark world, reflecting Christ in their care and living out their faith before those who notice they are different. Through Christian nursing education, the proper tools are provided to answer God's call on one's life to be a godly, effective, relevant, and professional nurse.© 2019 by InterVarsity Christian Fellowship