Over the last few months, I’ve continually been asking for prayer for nurse coverage for our little baby Theo. Theo is our six-month-old baby who was born with muscle weakness, which means he has a hard time swallowing and breathing at times and needs constant supervision. Thankfully he has a diagnosis that enables us to receive government assistance and home health care so the burden of his care does not fall solely on us.
However, there is a severe nurse shortage in the state of Florida and we have had a really hard time getting all our shifts covered. As a result, over the last couple months since Theo came back from the hospital, each week, Camilla has had to pull three consecutive all-nighters on the weekends while watching over Theo. This has put extreme pressure on me to watch the other boys while she rests during the day, and it has been stretching us almost to a breaking point and we are both exhausted. Many nurses have signed up to cover shifts and then simply didn’t show up, and this has been an added hardship as we’ve continually gotten our hopes up only to be let down.
I know many of you have been in prayer for us to find just the right nurses for Theo, so I wanted to share this with you today: we finally have all our night shifts covered! That means that on a typical week, Camilla and I will get the rest we need to preserve our sanity. Or what little sanity we have left. Our newest night nurse’s name is Carmen, she recently moved here from Illinois, and I’ve been so happy to see her every night that I think I’m freaking her out. I just can’t stop smiling. I keep poking my head into Theo’s room when she’s on duty, with a huge grin on my face, pinching myself to make sure I’m not dreaming. Its wonderful, and she is a huge blessing and answer to prayer. I just have to share this great news with you.
When’s the last time you had great news that you couldn’t help but share? We’ve had a lot of answers to prayer recently in our congregation: when loved ones in our church family have gotten the news that the cancer is gone! Or members of our community have gotten the jobs they’ve been praying for forever. We have a couple marriages we’re looking forward to next month, these young couples have sent their announcements of their good news all around the nation. These last three weeks we’ve celebrated in the baptisms of three young ones who have found joy in their salvation with Christ and have stood up here to share that joy with us.
This weekend, we’re going to look at the story of some individuals who got the best news ever, which infused their lives with joy and spread all throughout the surrounding region. This joy still reverberates throughout the world today, especially at Christmas time.
I invite you to join with us this weekend as we explore the uncontainable joy of Christmas from the perspective of the shepherds in Luke 2:8-20. I hope and pray we can listen in and find their enthusiasm contagious and experience it in full ourselves this year. You can join us for our Saturday afternoon service at 3:30, or for our Sunday morning service is at 10:15, which is also available online. We also have Sunday School classes at 9 for all ages.
Have a great weekend and I look forward to pursuing Christ, Community, and the Great Commission Together with you soon!
-Pastor Nathan Rice