Staying power

Our true vocation
The reason I am still in the ministry is because of the night I decided to leave the ministry. It was my day off. The phone rang, and it was the chaplain at a nearby hospital. Usually we would exchange pleasantries, but all she said was, “Come to the hospital—now.” I trusted the urgency in her voice and arrived in about ten minutes.

I found her with a young couple from our church I knew and loved. I sensed shrieks and sobs lingering in the room, which was eerily silent; the wife and then the husband fell onto my shoulders. I could hardly bear their weight as they gasped for words. Their child Caroline, whom I had baptized a couple of weeks earlier, had just been diagnosed with a malignant tumor intertwined with her spinal cord at the base of the brain. I couldn’t parse the news. Then a man in a white coat said, “We must go to Duke Medical Center—now.”


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