High School

Oceanographer or Nurse???

March 1971 – High School Junior – Midwest, USA

“That ye might walk worthy of the Lord, unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:10 KJV).

I thank the Lord that He has now given me peace and a purpose in life. I want to walk worthy of the Lord, serve him, and know him better.  My sister, Marsha, withdrew from the university pre-veterinary program and is now studying to be a nurse at a hospital diploma program. She comes home every weekend and teaches a Bible class for my high school friends and me. It is so wonderful to study the Bible, God’s love letter to me, so I can grow closer to Him!

fav books sm
Some of my favorite books.

I also am reading books in the home Bible study program and biographies of Christians which have been helpful.  I especially like Major Bible Themes by Lewis Sperry Chafer, the founder of Dallas Seminary. Notes on the Pentateuch by C.H. McIntosh has helped me understand the first five books of the Old Testament. My favorite Christian biographies are By Searching and In the Arena by Isobel Kuhn, and God’s Man in China about Hudson Taylor. They both served God in China with the former China Inland Mission founded by Hudson Taylor.

While she was a student in Bible school, Isobel Kuhn learned to put the Lord first every morning and spend time in Bible reading and prayer. After reading “O God, thou art my God, early will I seek thee; my soul thirsteth for thee...” in Psalm 63:1 (KJV), I asked the Lord to help me get up earlier to read my Bible and pray before I went to school. God refreshes me after I set my mind on him in the morning and gives me a helpful verse to carry with me during the school day. When I oversleep and miss my Bible reading, my day doesn’t go as well.  After school, I study my Bible for an hour before I start my homework. God multiplies the time and helps me do my homework faster! I silently pray before I take a test at school, and ask God to help choose the right answer.

The past year, I asked God to show me what career He wants me to pursue. Before I became a Christian, I wanted to be an oceanographer or landscape architect because I enjoy science, art, and the outdoors. But now, I want to work with people and point them to the Lord Jesus Christ. I have considered becoming a teacher or a nurse. If I become a nurse like my sister, I could study science and help people at the same time. Perhaps I could teach nursing or become a missionary nurse.

Reflection – 2013

Old and new electronic edition!
Old and new electronic edition of Cherry Ames

And so the Lord led me to become a nurse. My concept of nursing was strongly influenced by the Cherry Ames RN series by Helen Wells which I avidly read in my early teens. The first book was published in 1944 during World War II to recruit young women to join the Army Nurse Cadet Corps. Cherry went on to work in over twenty-five different fields of nursing! I was delighted to discover they are now available as electronic books. I smiled as I reread the first book, Cherry Ames, Student Nurse.

On her first day of nursing school, the Nursing Superintendent said to the new nursing probation students, “Let me remind you that you are going to need good health, intelligence, unselfishness, patience, tact, humor, sympathy, efficiency, neatness, plus plenty of energy for hard work.” A groan echoed around the room. “But let me remind you, too,” Miss Reamer said, “that nursing is the most rewarding of all professions for women. And frequently the most romantic and exciting,” she added with a twinkle in her eye.

Real nursing is not nearly as glamorous, but it is fulfilling. Although I never became a full-time missionary nurse, the Lord allowed me to take several short-term medical missionary trips to Belize, Honduras, and China. I also took a graduate nursing course in tropical medicine and transcultural nursing in the Dominican Republic. God gave me many opportunities to point my patients, their families, and my co-workers to the Lord Jesus Christ. I never lacked for a job for long, never went hungry, and always paid my bills on time. God has proved Philippians 4:19 over and over again to me, But my God shall supply ALL your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (KJV).

Overall, nursing has been good to me. The challenges and frustrations of any career outweigh the great satisfaction of hearing one of my patients says, “Thank you so much for helping me today, Pam!”

By the way, I am glad I never became an oceanographer since I later discovered my proneness to seasickness. I will share more about that in my blog about being a cruise ship nurse-for one week. God makes no mistakes.

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