So I have this condition, uh, gynecomastia, which I blogged about on February 17. My family doctor wanted to make sure the condition is not caused by a tumor on my pituitary gland. He ordered an MRI on my brain!
I went in for that MRI the other day. I did not remember from high school biology where one’s pituitary gland even was, but I learned very quickly that it is in the middle of one’s brain! (that little orange dot in the picture to the right). An MRI is an amazing medical device that is a kind of cave you are slid into and for an hour you hear someone banging on pipes while the medical attendant is outside the room talking to you over an intercom.
After an hour in which I probably fell asleep 30 times, the medical attendant paroled me and sent me on my way. The next 24 hours were really hard on my wife and myself. Waiting for the MRI expert (who was probably the one banging on the pipes) to “read” the results and communicate them to my family doctor.
The next day I waited in Examination Room #8 for my family doctor to tell me the results. He walked in and said “. . . no tumor.” I was thankful he wasted no time in asking me about my morning, or my grandkids, or my tennis. He cut right to the chase and said those beautiful words, “. . . no tumor.”
I thanked him and then immediately called my wife Linda. I asked her about her morning, about her plans for that day — NOT! I didn’t even say “hello” — I simply said, “NO TUMOR!” We rejoiced together and she reminded me of the various medical issues I’ve put her through in our almost 45 years of marital bliss.
We pick on the younger generation for their “entitlement mentality,” and we are probably right to do so. But us older ones — Do we believe that because we are followers of Jesus, He somehow owes anything?! I’m reminded of a great quote by J.B. Philips (who did the Philips translation of the New Testament):
“Frankly, I do not know who started the idea that if men serve God and live their lives to please him then he will protect them by special intervention from pain, suffering, misfortune, and the persecution of evil men. We need look no further than the recorded life of Jesus Christ himself to see that even the most perfect human life does not secure such divine protection. It seems to me that a great deal of misunderstanding and mental suffering could be avoided if this erroneous idea were exposed and abandoned. . . . The idea that if a man pleases God then God will especially shield him, belongs to the dim twilight of religion and not to Christianity at all.” (J.B. Phillips, God Our Contemporary)