Hello! My name is Kaitlin and I’ve been a nurse for about four and a half years, working on an adult inpatient unit that cares for hematology/oncology/bone marrow transplant/palliative care patients. I knew in high school that I wanted to be a nurse after being introduced to the world of anatomy and physiology; I’m still amazed by the human body every day! Then as a freshman in college, the Lord saved me and I surrendered my life to Him, giving this career path a whole lot more purpose. Now nine years later, He has placed me in the very spot He wants me but often the stories of my patients are devastating and heavy. Cancer is such a heartbreaker and I long for the day the Lord returns to create a new heaven and new earth. One of the patients I so desperately hope to see when I get to heaven is a man who passed away this year.
He and his sweet wife became like family to me during their stay on our unit for over two months after receiving a bone marrow transplant. There were so many mornings I had to bear the news that still no cells were growing in his bone marrow space, praying one day there would be a more promising white blood cell count number to share. I’ll never forget the day I walked down the long hallway to where this patient and his wife sat every morning drinking coffee and enjoying the sunshine if it was out. We all knew the results of his bone marrow biopsy would be discussed that morning, telling us if there was any sign of recovery that his blood counts weren’t showing us. He touched my hand and said, “Kaitlin, will you pray for me? There comes a day when every man needs hope. And I’m not too close with God but know you are. “ The Lord opened my mouth and I asked for healing and salvation and remember ending the prayer asking the Lord for “good news.”
The doctors came in later and told us that there was no sign of cell growth in the bone marrow, but that there also was no sign of cancer reoccurrence so hope remained that his cells may grow back with more time. The patient looked at me teary-eyed, and said, “Kaitlin prayed for good news this morning and here we have good news.” I smiled with tears running down my cheeks. So badly did I want this man to overcome cancer and death but even more badly I wanted him to overcome eternal death and separation from God. His transplant never did engraft, but I had opportunity later to share The Good News of Jesus and the freedom from sin available to him and prayed the Lord would give him belief.
Now, this is not an every day experience of a Christian nurse. Like in the Bible, there are many mundane days in between opportunities likes these. But I ask the Lord nearly every shift to open my eyes to the people he wants me to share this Good News with on my unit. And so many times I have no idea what to say, and I pray, “Lord, give me your words.” And he does. It’s scary and never easy, but it is such a privilege to be part of what God is doing in the lives of people around me.
–Kaitlyn Vierheller, RN