As I finish out my first year with Morning Vitals, I’ve been looking back at the road I’ve traveled and forward at the road ahead. In the midst of it all, this week I’ve been challenging myself to find an overarching theme for the relationship between Christmas and nursing. And I think I’ve found it.
As I’ve said before, many of the reasons I attended nursing school were very similar to the reasons I’ve previously wanted to attend seminary. In that discussion, I noted that everything is related to nursing in some way. As I think about Christmas, about its meaning and significance, I can also see clearly that Christmas is related to everything. Indeed, the “reason for the season” is the reason for nursing and everything else.
What I mean by the reason for the season is what people have meant for many years. There must be a reason for all that our civilization associates with Christmas. Otherwise, it’s all so far-fetched and counterintuitive. Within the Judeo-Christian framework that makes up the underpinnings of our civilization, the defining event recognized for centuries has been the first advent of Jesus Christ.
Granted, not everything we associate with Christmas has its origin within the history of Christianity, and the Christian perspective on the meaning of the birth of Jesus has been that of a numerical and power majority. Still, it’s inescapable that the birth, life, and death of Jesus–and to the Christian his resurrection as well–have been central subjects of discovery and wonder.
I say this reason for the season is also the reason for nursing because of the very Christian motivation to follow Jesus’ command to love others. Despite their all-to-frequent human foibles, nurses and other health care professionals show this love daily to patients and their support networks. They often do so in self-sacrificial ways, which in some way mirror the crucifixion and resurrection that ended the first advent of Jesus.
From the Christian perspective, Jesus Christ is Lord of all. As so many Christmas songs proclaim that Jesus is the Son of God who “rules the world with truth and grace,” it should be no surprise that a god who reigns should govern everything, including nursing. So, again, the reason for the season, meaning Jesus Christ, is the one for whom nursing and everything else in life exist.
Next week, I’ll discuss what lies ahead–or what I hope lies ahead–for Morning Vitals. I hope you’ll join me and then continue to join me in the new year.