Learning To Depend on God in Real-Time

Medical (and American) culture is known for self-reliance, not reliance on God.

Many students tell me there’s tremendous pressure to “know everything”, all the time.  The unspoken goal is to be self-sufficient by acquiring superior knowledge and clinical skills.   Many times the gap between who you are, and what “they” tell you you should be is devastating.

In less than 24 hours, my family and I will participate in a two-week medical missions project in an underserved area of North Philadelphia.  Our overarching goals are to share the love of Christ through whole-person care to the community, and to become more like Christ ourselves.

Although we’ve always known this, as the project gets closer, our planning team has come to a profound realization that there’s no way we can pull this off by ourselves.  Instead, many of us are sensing more deeply the needs around us, our own shortcomings, and the reality that we have an “adversary, the devil, [who] prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).  So, we’re spending more time in prayer, and reminding each other to depend on God.

Don’t get me wrong.  We’ve spent lots of time strategizing, planning, and preparing.  The same God who calls us to pray and depend on Him also tells us, “whatever you do, work at it with all your heart” (Colossians 3:23).

But that’s not the reminder we need, and probably not the reminder you need, either.  We need to relearn in practice what we know in theory – that our sufficiency comes from God alone.


About Bryan Stoudt

On my personal website (bryanstoudt.com), I help Christians follow Jesus in a noisy, broken world. I also have the privilege of helping Philadelphia's healthcare students and professionals do this as Area Director for the Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA). More information at cmdaphiladelphia.org. On a personal note, I'm fortunate to be married to my wonderful wife, Sharon. Together, we have four fantastic children. In my spare time, I enjoy roasting coffee, running, reading and learning foreign languages.
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