The surgeon I'm working with now is mostly a vascular surgeon, which means he does lots of operations on people who have problems with their arteries or veins. For me, this means that suddenly I'm looking at lots and lots of feet. Many people with bad circulation have problems in their feet. I'm not exactly sure why this is, but lately it feels like all I'm doing is looking at feet.
Usually, this is not a problem. I do not mind feet. But once you get bad circulation, your feet tend to get gross. And I mean gross. Suddenly, I do not like feet. At least, the feet that I'm spending time looking at and touching to find a pulse. Today was probably the worst. I had to look at this guy's feet who had a toe that was actually ROTTING, as in it was black and falling off. And then there was the smell. I think the only way to really appreciate the smell of gangrene is to smell it yourself. Thankfully, blogger hasn't invented a way to post scents, so you are safe. At the end of the appointment, the doctor asked me to take some bandages and wrap it up.
Then the patient asked me to help him put his shoes back on. And suddenly, I was looking around for someone else to do it. This gentleman had some strokes, and so had lost a lot of dexterity in his hands, and had trouble putting his shoes on. As he asked me for help, all I could think is how I really don't want to do this, and why doesn't he just do it himself?? I didn't go to four years of medical school to help someone put on their shoes.
And then suddenly in my mind was John 13, where Jesus having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love...so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples' feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
I was totally convicted. Didn't I write in that personal statement I sent to residency programs about how much I want to serve people? And here, I had this great opportunity, but I really wasn't interested. This wasn't the kind of serving I had in mind, I suppose. But this is exactly the kind of serving Jesus did - dealing with people's disgusting, nasty, dirty, and diseased feet. Just like he took my filthy, dirty, disgusting, and diseased self and redeemed me, making me a daughter of the king.
I guess God can use ANYthing to remind us of his love - even rotten toes.