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Logo of AMEN 2019: Christ in You

Team Building: Praying With Patients

Mark Finley Brian Schwartz


Brian Schwartz, MD & Mark Finley, DDiv OBJECTIVES 1. Discuss the value and importance of praying with (for) patients. 2. Identify “do’s and don’ts” in clinically based prayer. 3. Demonstrate how to begin praying with patients.



  • November 1, 2019
    4:00 PM
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Well Father in heaven we just again thank you for the opportunity to be here for the Amen conference and as we specifically study your word and talk about examples of the power of prayer just pray that this could be effective to encourage each of us to do this better more consistently in an effective way and our practices teach us Jesus' method of reaching the heart there pray in Jesus' name amen. Pastor Mark thank you Dr Swartz. It's good to see you it's always nice to teach when people are in the audience if you didn't have anybody would be more difficult 25 years ago I was flying to an appointment and my son was sitting next to me he was in his teens at the time he was reading USA Today front page and he turned to me and he said Dad you're going to be really interested in this article and. He had to be USA Today in there was a front page article that was titled Does prayer make a difference and the article reported on the work of Dr Larry Jossy and it talked about experiment studies that were done in intercessory prayer and the impact that that was having on patients I became really interested in that so contacted Larry Dorsey I was with it is written television at the time and I said Dr Dorsey a voice been interested in prayer you were featured on c.n.n. you were featured in a.b.c. n.b.c. c.b.s. of Fox News you were making the new circuits the Sunday morning shows I love to do an interview with you I'm a Christian I'm a 7th Day Adventist at Venice have a large medical facilities all around the world and Dr Dorsey came out now what I didn't know was something about his eastern mysticism a leanings at the time which I discovered quite a bit later Dr Dorsey believed that when you prayed there was a kind of an energy that left you and entered into the other person and to promote healing he also believed that you could you could pray for petri dishes and the bacteria would grow more rapidly and so I began to learn a lot about Dossie but he is the one that at least opened the door for me to begin to study in assess re prayer and certainly not eastern mysticism so don't get nervous. It was really interesting to navigate that t.v. interview that I had with him and to keep us on the biblical track what about intercessory prayer though why does intercessory prayer work or does it doesn't make any difference if you pray for your patients or if you don't pray for your patients. There are 3 things I think about intercessory prayer for our patients that really we need to consider number one when patients are prayed for they themselves feel more confidence in the practitioner that prays for them and with that positive mental attitude it releases positive chemical and or friends that help the healing process I think that when a patient has confidence in the provider it makes a dramatic difference and so God creates a spiritual atmosphere 2nd to Lee When patients pray when they pray for themselves there is very good scientific evidence there is about 208 the last I checked studies that have been done on religion and healing faith and healing and the evidence I think is overwhelming that people who have spiritual leanings people that pray people that study the Word of God people that attend church tend to have better health outcomes than those that don't and I think what a person prays and they have confidence in God It gives them a sense of divine interaction in their life but there is a 3rd area and that's the area that I want to spend most of my time with you on and that's this. That God works through intercession in ways that the human mind may not fully comprehend or understand in ways that he would not work or didn't work if we didn't pray that God intervenes that as Christians we believe that God moves powerfully and he intervenes in life because of prayer I want to look at the theological basis for that before Dr Schwartz comes on and gives us some practical examples of intercessory prayer so the question is this Does God interact with human beings in a process of healing in ways that the human mind may not fully comprehend or understand when we pray. And if we didn't pray would those same outcomes take place is God doing everything he can to work the process of healing with your patients whether you pray or not and if indeed he is what difference does intercessory prayer make or maybe God is doing everything he can but our prayers and able God to do more than he could have done otherwise Let's look 1st at the biblical theology of intercessory prayer you find that I think one in some of the most clear clearly clear of places in Paul's epistles we're going to go to 1st kolache and Chapter one. The Apostle Paul is in prison in Rome it's his 1st imprisonment it is $61.00 a.d. or thereabouts early sixty's Paul's in his mid fifty's and you look at collage in chapter one now Paul has will likely never been to kolache and before he's got word from a preface that there are heresies in the church so Paul begins to pray for the church at kolache and I want you to notice this the best of this city of Paul's prayer now it's not that Paul is present in Israel and seeing the church because he's not there he's in prison in Rome kolache or it is in Turkey and if you look at collage in Chapter one Verse 9 it says Paul says For this reason we also since the day we heard it do not cease to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will so Paul is in a dark damp dirty dungeon in Rome he's on his knees praying that the church in kolache will be filled with the wisdom of God then it says in all spiritual understanding verse 10 that you may have a walk worth the of the Lord fully pleasing him being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God So Paul prays for members of the Church of caution that they would be fully pleasing to God that they would be fruitful of good works and increase of the knowledge of God verse 11 that they would be strengthened with all might according to the glorious power for all patients in long suffering with joy so Paul prays that they will be filled with the very power of God He is not they are so Paul believed in him to say as free prayer he believed it is pretty as his prayers ascended to heaven that God would send angelic force. Says that he would send His Holy Spirit to people in kolache you find that also in the book of Luke the shins Paul again writes of fissions about at the same time that he writes goal ations and I've read the cautions we look at a fusion is chapter one and Paul says this. He says in verse 16 of cautions one that we do not cease to give thanks for you making mention of you in my prayers are very specific He's not praying for anybody in this prayer he's praying for the church in f.s.s. that God the God of our Lord Jesus Christ the Father of Cory may give to you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation and knowledge of him that the eyes of your understanding being in the light and that may you may know what the hope of his calling is so Paul is praying that they would see clearly so ever dental The apostle Paul believed in intercession he believed that when we pray God does things when we pray that wouldn't happen if we didn't pray Ellen White reaffirms this in great controversy page $525.00 when she says God will do an answer to the prayer of faith that which he would not do did we not thus Pray God will do in answer to the prayer of faith that which he would not do if we would not thus pray and then ministry of healing 5 o 9 says prayer and faith will do what no power on earth will accomplish so if indeed that is true it is it's biblical Why is it true why does God act in certain ways than weep when we intercede for somebody who is ill. Then what what what what enables God to do that isn't God the God of Healing isn't he facilitating healing before we pray he is he is we find some help in understanding this in understanding freewill and the great controversy between good and evil there are many passages in the Bible that urge us to pray there are very few passages in the Bible that tell us what happens when we pray 1st John Chapter 5 is all you is one of the only chapters in the Bible that take the curtain aside and help us What understand what happens when we intercede for others and you're looking there 1st John Chapter 5 verse 14 and onward now this is the confidence we have in Him Now the confidence is not in ourselves the confidence is not in our prayers that if we ask anything according to His will He hears us and if we know that he hears us whatever we ask we know that we have the petitions we desire we asked of him now verse 16 is the verse I'm really interested in if anyone sees his brother sitting a sin that does not lead to death what's the sin that leads to death what's that called. Now the sin against Holy Spirit the unpardonable sin so this person has not committed the unpardonable sin he will ask now who is the heed that does the asking the intercessor and he who is the 2nd he God will give him who is the him the intercessor life for those who commit sin not leading to death this is an incredibly powerful passage notice he the intercessor will ask and he God will give him a life for those who commit sin not into death as we get on our knees and pray for another the Holy Spirit is poured out through through us the River of the water of life flows through us to touch somebody else with the healing grace of go to. Why does that take place because in the controversy between good and evil God respects the freedom of choice so God is doing everything he can to reach your patient with the Gospel he's doing everything he can to facilitate healing whether you pray or not but when you get on your knees in prayer when you pray with your patient it accomplishes 3 things immediately one the patient typically will have a greater confidence in you as a medical provider 84 percent according to a c.n.n. poll 84 percent of Americans pray at least once a week 84 percent 64 percent of Americans said we would welcome a prayer by our health care provider now there are some studies that give you lower than that I read one study that said 19 percent but when I looked at that study it and only evaluated 350 some odd people and it was a very narrow slice but if you look at studies by Pew Research that have done a broad swath of Americans about 64 percent said we would welcome prayer by medical provider. A larger number than that have confidence in medical providers who pray so when you pray with your patients 1st it binds you with them it takes them out of the realm of being a statistic it enables them to have that sense that this is a Godly position that I can have confidence in 2nd when you pray with them it really it enables them in that positive frame of mind to release positive chemical indoor fins that help to facilitate healing thirdly which I think is the most important when you pray with them in the controversy between good and evil although God has been limited in what he is able to do because of the freedom of choice of another as you pray for them God can look at Satan guy can say look I respect the freedom of choice of Dr Brian Schwartz he is praying for this patient and I pour out my love my grace through him my healing power to touch that person with the Gospel Jesus prayed for people by name that's biblical look at Luke now Luke is a physician and it's very fascinating to me that Dr Luke is the only one that records this particular narrative and you find it in glucose chapter 22 and I wonder if the doctor is saying something to us today here Luke Chapter 22 and we're looking at verse 31. And the Lord said Simon Simon indeed Satan has asked for you that he may sift you as wheat I think Satan asks for our patients Satan desires to inflict sickness because Jesus is the author of Life and Health and Satan is the author of sickness so sometimes Satan prompts people to have poor health practices and they can bring sickness upon themselves by their poor choices sometimes because of the environment that we're in the toxic environment sickness comes sometimes it comes because of genetics but behind it all is the 1st thing in the rebellion in the universe the rebellion with loose of it with Adam and Eve and Lucifer is triumph there but notice a time as a state has asked for you verse 31 that he might see if he was weak but I have prayed for you that your faith should not fail when you have returned to me strengthen your brethren so Jesus prayed for Peter by name Evidently Jesus believed intercessory prayer didn't he and Jesus believed him prayed for people by name because he prays repeater here by name if indeed it is true that intercessory prayer is Biblical and it is if indeed it is true that intercessory prayer. Facilitates healing How then can we make bridges into the prayer life of it and to pray for others sometimes it may seem a little awkward at times but there are some things that we can do. One of the things is as one is taking an inventory as we're talking to people about their health and we say to them share with me a little bit about when this stomach pain started share with me a little bit about when this neck pain started share with me a little bit about when this heart difficulty began to rise of looked at your medical history an issue interact for the even those one to 3 minutes with that patient because I would know that depending on your specialty and your background typically Dr Bryant is not doing 40 cardiology interventions a day but my son who is in dermatology often sees 35 patients a day he has trained with Dr John Chung who sees 100 a day so you know what the doctor charges one of a kind but so some of you were seeing various number of patients a day our interactions at times are not long with those patients but as one is looking and evaluating where that patient is at in the realm of their experience one can say Tell me a little bit about your history when did this pain start when were you 1st diagnosed with this melanoma. Share with me a little bit about your heart problem if you're a dentist it's easier for you to talk than it is for the patient to talk. But as you are dealing with those patients there's a couple things that you can do if you are a primary care physician. And or if you are an internist a cardiologist did uncover just you can simply say to a patient Here's an interesting thing about the studies that I want to tell you to there's a great he did there's a scale of greedy ation and the scale of gradations says this the more critical a person's disease is the more they desire prayer you know if a person comes into you because they have a broken finger their desire may not be as great as a person who has been diagnosed with multiple myeloma and has 6 months to live so there's a gradient scale and you know it's like you're a person with a broken finger and you say put your Henitiuk and I pray for you and they begin to shake marrow like a man who was a put the finger I did think I was on death row you know but there is a way to bridge that one of the things is taking a spiritual inventory many physicians have found this helpful they simply say to their patient would you share with me what role to spirituality or faith play in your life what role does that play. You know you've talked to them about their disease you talk about family and you just simply ask them that question that's going to tell you a lot another way to do it is simply say something like this when you face a health challenge where do you find your support you know all of us have challenges in our life and many of us have family that we try to support friends who we turn to support him I have a very supportive family and friends but you know as a Christian physician I find great strength in prayer. And you know I like to pray with all my patients may I pray with you the May i principle enables the individual to say yes or no Most of them are going to say yes one of the physicians not a 7th Day Adventist physician who I was reading a book about recently and the whole idea of praying with patients use this illustration he said that when patients come into a hospital and he was a trauma physician he said when patients come into a hospital very often they are very anxious and nervous so he offers that his patients something that they wouldn't think about he said you know when my patients going to a hospital they're so anxious he said I offered them a sleeping pill now I was reading an article on prayer and I thought that's rather strange why why would he say that but then I saw his illustration is point he said I offered him a sleeping pill and he said you know because it helps him sleep or the night before their operation and then he said they can say yes to the sleeping pill they can say no to the sleeping pill but but they would not have thought of that and he said it's the same thing with intercessory prayer he said many of my patients would never think about a physician praying for them so just as I offer them a medication that the patient who manages their health can refuse but they may have not thought of that I offer them prayer and he said I use this expression may I may I pray with you I think Dr Schwartz you have. Used the expression often with your patients I like to pet pray with all of my patients and they I pray with you share some experiences with that there are thank you. So. Yeah just that send grain and all of your minds say it several times the way that I say it to my patients but I've just tried to work prayer into my practice so that it's an automatic thing that I offer to do with all my pretty patients and that's exactly what I say so as I'm getting ready to close the encounter we've talked about things I say any other questions and that. Work really hard to make sure that I'm getting good press corps and I'm looking at my patients in the eye and that I'm addressing all their concerns so I ask them any other concerns or questions that you have and once they say if they say yes I'll address those if they say no then I say by the way then one of the things I offer to do with all my patients is to have a prayer is that something that you'd appreciate so I always ask them the question I just say oh this is a normal thing I do I don't want them becoming alarm thinking that all of a sudden oh my goodness I'm going to die that's just a routine thing but I would like to us to start off that I didn't start off knowing how to do this I went to Loma Linda and in Long Island I had one time when I had the opportunity to pray with a patient and that was when I was on a rotation at Wildwood with Dr David Rose who was the who was down at Wildwood at that time who was my attending We had just one patient that came into the emergency room the whole month that Wildwood had an emergency room he came in with a lacerated ear and he was an old guy very hard of hearing and a lot of bleeding and so I stitched up his ear and went back and reported to Dr Drew's that stitched up a 0 and then I thought he was ready to go home and says Ok have you done the most important thing. To me what is that that have you prayed with am I so they'll know I didn't do that so I went back in there to pray with him but I'd forgotten his name he couldn't. Me I was yelling at the top of my Was there are large please bless those gentlemen that the serial heal up quickly I had no idea what to say and it was extremely awkward and I didn't want anything to do with it for a long time. But I was feeling this tug at my heart that there had to be something more to medicine than just practicing. As a physician. To seeing patients and considering that my job and then going to my church and doing some of ours in the evening for chipper for stop smoking seminars and then going on mission trips that was my ministry and I was feeling this nagging concern that there had to be more and that's when it wasn't actually the very 1st day men conference but the preceding meeting at Kota Springs where Pastor Mark came and spoke to a small group of about 50 physicians and dentists that spawn Amen and he challenged us to start thinking about praying with patients just before I had come to that meeting I had a patient who had a critical left main lesion that assumes we engage that with a catheter a blood pressure just plummeted and we needed the center to surgery and. There were I work in a catholic up with a lot of young people that are pretty post-modern and I just felt that it would be an embarrassing thing if I was there. Praying with my patients and front of these people and so I was feeling self-conscious and I was feeling. At the same time that I needed to do something more it just didn't know how to do it and just before I came to this conference literally 2 weeks before this lady crashed on the cath lab table an anesthesiologist came in and he said there are about 20 people in the room now getting ready to go to the operating room he said Can everybody just be quiet for one moment I'm going to say a prayer and they call lab came quiet then they rushed her off to the operating room after he prayed and it just struck me like a dagger what the people that I thought would be judging me for praying were like wow that was pretty neat to just see that he prayed that I should have been there when they do that promise I don't know how and that's when Pastor Mark came along so I left that conference determined that I was going to. Put to practice what he taught. I think I was the only one that did because when we had the 1st day man conference they reported back my experience and basically been doing this workshop ever since but starting off there was a little bit awkward but it's now the easiest thing in the world because it's automatic my patients to expect that I get patients from patients who tell their friends and families the members of their church that you need to go see Dr Schwartz because he prays So if you're new in practice and you want to cynical reason why to pray with your patients it's good business at least you know Heil maybe not in every part of the country but it's good business patients truly believe truly want to. Mention very rarely do they say no and. I think the reason that it's really important I actually have the highest press any scores of any of my colleagues in our practice and I do do things like make eye contact I do pay attention to the patient I use a scribe so I don't even touch a computer when I'm in the room so I do some important things but I actually think it's because I pray and. Patients perceive prayer maybe even differently than we do that's right I pray with my Muslim patients I pray with my Hindu patients I pray with. Anybody who will let me pray with them even one Wicca who doesn't believe there is a God and worships the devil but I got tears in her eyes and responded but I pray with all of them but what they sense whether they agree with my Christian prayer or not they sets in they interpret it that I truly care about them. And I think that's important and so if it helps them that they know that I'm supposed to do a good job as a physician and they know that I'm supposed to make the right diagnosis they know that I'm supposed to care for them that's all part of the contract of medicine but when I pray for them they see that as genuine concern that I care about them as a person and that's how they interpret it even if they don't agree with my philosophy about prayer and so that gets to their heart and it gets better scores that's not the reason to do it but it's one of the reasons that that I have so. I 1st started off just looking for patients to that I thought were pretty good people and good Christians and would appreciate it and very quickly I realized I needed to be praying for everybody and it turned out that the ones that I kind of had judged as not interested in Christianity the ones that I wrote off because they were dressed like a gang member of their like a man on a motorcycle or they just looked pretty rough those are the ones that would actually start sobbing when I offered to pray and they would get tears in their eyes and I've told this story before but it's a very very powerful story. And this happened within just the 1st few months of. Learning how to do this I had a patient named Steven who. Stephen's father died at the age of about 36 from heart disease and Stephen was now in his thirty's he was 100 pounds overweight right around 300 pounds he had all the risk factors for heart disease he was a chain smoker he binge drank on the weekends he was obese weighing around $300.00 pounds and then of course he had hypertension diabetes not about like syndrome. And very high cholesterol numbers all the risk factors he went to the emergency room with some rather sharp chest pain and the work up was negative but they sent him to come see me and we did a stress test and we looked at everything and I don't think this was a promise heart it was very a typical. But I just talked to Steve and I said Steve unfortunately you've got every single risk factor your father died at the age of 36 your I think he was 38 at this point and so you're on borrowed time you've got every single risk factor asked him about his family life has marriage was really shaky he was writing a motorcycle down to Cincinnati about an hour away and back to work every single day was living a pretty hard life and just to crashed on the weekends and he and went to alcohol to try to console his troubled life so everything was falling apart and I don't usually do this used to pick one or 2 things that I want a patient to work on but somehow I just come back inspired about the power of prayer and so I came back. In somehow just felt impressed that I needed to tell Stephen what the ideal was and I put it in terms that God wants to set you free from these things you do not have to follow in your father's footsteps God can rewrite your history and I said Stephen the ideal for you is to follow God's plan God's plan is to not destroy your body through smoking and through alcohol in God's plan is to be out of plant based diet and to get your that would help get your weight down with help with your diabetes help with your cholesterol help with your high blood pressure and said Do you believe in God He says I know I went to church a few times when I was a kid but really haven't been doing that as so that's Ok God believes in you and I would encourage you to get back in with a support group a church group but is it Ok if I pray for you and he's a pretty rough $300.00 pound guy who came out on a motorcycle wearing just a leather vest no shirt underneath that a bandana around us had he looked pretty rough he just started sobbing. No I wasn't a very good doctor at that point I didn't and roll him in a chip program I didn't get him plugged into our church's smoking program which I now do with my patients I didn't even give him a brochure or I didn't give him a book I didn't give him anything but I did pray with him I prayed that God would give him deliverance over these habits that he was in slave to and I don't see him back for just about a year. And. In a year later he came back and he looked like a totally different guy he was wearing a shirt clean cut cut his hair wasn't wearing a bandana didn't come on a motorcycle and my nurse. While I think Stephen had his very high trick surgery because he'd lost almost 80 almost 80 pounds just in a period of a year and. Stephen was on no medications for diabetes no medications for blood pressure no medications for cholesterol and walked in the room with a Stephen did you have very Actrix surgery as my nurse them times jumps to conclusions and. That's really the only way we see that kind of weight loss and he says oh no I didn't do that I said What did you do he says uh oh I just did exactly what you said I stopped smoking I haven't smoked since I left her office a year ago I haven't drank since I left her office a year ago I started attending a church I quit my job in Cincinnati and I'm working here now my marriage is doing well and I became a vegan vegetarian since the day I left her office. Now this doesn't happen most days this close to encourage me that the plan that I have been challenged by Pastor Mark could really work and somebody is life. It also encourages me that in the past I was making my patients into legal us because I would say things like you know you really should stop smoking right well he knows he should really stop smoking it but Mark Twain says stopping smoking is easy I've done it a 1000 times he has no power to overcome smoking and that's the problem inside just tell somebody you know what you need to try harder you need to just crank up your willpower I'm asking them to become a legal last if I turn them over to the power of prayer and convince them that there's a higher power that wants to set them free and I enter duce them to Jesus as their career and their Savior then I think I've given them that power to make real changes in their life and that's what Stephen illustrated to me and I now believe I said that last night now say it again because I said I was going to say it but if you are not tapping your patience into a spiritual power to set them free from the things that they're in slave to them that is medical malpractise we'll call it spiritual malpractise but it's just as bad as a medical problem a practice to know that you have a therapy that works to deliver people from their alcoholism to deliver them from their tobacco addiction to set them free from their food addictions to help deal with the problems that are causing these things in the 1st place and you don't offer that to your patients in any other way of their word that would be more practiced and so I believe that we as Christian and 7th Avenue to physicians know what the true source of healing is that's the creator and if we're not tapping our patients into that at least offering it to them we're committing spiritual and medical malpractise and I've never seen a successful lawsuit because somebody did pray with their patient but maybe that should be challenged down the road. And so one by one is just become. It's become a habit my patients are used to it it's gotten easier because now patients self-selecting out to come to me because many of them are being referred I had a lady bring her daughter in to see me her daughter was 23 years old not 23 years old I just assumed she must be having palpitations because that's the that's the one thing I see young people for don't seek coronary artery disease rarely see them for heart failure maybe for a post problem cardiomyopathy but rarely what I see a young person and I came out and said hello and my patient was over in the chair and her daughter was on the table on us without seeing you today and. There was nothing written down to refer to her there was nothing written down what her problem was blood pressure was normal and had some labs they look pretty normal and I started asking So are you feeling your heart race and she's got a nuts. But so after asking 21 questions and getting no answers I focused of why are you here and she just looked at her mom so I looked at her mom and her mom said oh I just wanted her to have a doctor who prayed with her. So it was kind of cute but there's no diagnosis the bill for that. But that just shows you how important prayer is and that was so important this lady who was an elder in her church that I now see at least a dozen members of her church because she says I got up in church and I testified about 2 and so this has the power like nothing else to open the door to a spiritual conversation so let's see I don't want to just go over a couple things we've got about 20 minutes and I want to give you guys time for questions at the end. But Minister of healing page 118 the 2nd suffering We'll have much more confidence in the physician who they are confident loves in fear is God and they rely upon his words they feel a sense of safety in the presence and administration of that physician and that's essentially what Pastor Mark just said and so why prayer prayer so. There is a power in her we've established that it imparts hope in divine healing and it points to the only source of healing but I think there's another reason when I pray it acknowledges that I'm not the one that's in charge right so has that effect on me too in fact it keeps me humble my colleagues see me is Kambal and as a physician and we talked about that last night I have a tendency to easily be proud. That comes with the success that comes with the responsibility we have it comes with all the things that go with it and so it keeps me humble house me know who I'm working for and so there is a benefit in that way as well I've already mentioned that goes beyond what's expected by the patient and it opens the door to a spiritual conversation so. Sometimes just because I've prayed nothing might happen for a while chief of the fire department. Had valve surgery and prayed with him a couple times before that I see him once a year not a mixture of heart valves Ok and 2 years later after his surgery he was the next to last patient at the end of the day and. Went through his exam everything looked good like that is that go everything was fine and just said You're doing a great job let's keep it up and by the way one of the things I offer to do is have a prayer and he's like Doc can I just ask you a question before that said you're a spiritual person. Why do you believe the Bible is true and so we had a 45 minute discussion and my nurse knocks on that there are dark horse again other patients he's like I also started to take up your time and. I'll see you get another year next year. Doc you're a smart person do you really believe that God created the world and he did it in 7 literal days another 45 minute discussion now what I realized is that this guy doesn't attend a church he hangs out the fire department he hangs he's got a pretty secular life probably grew up with some religious background at one point but when he started having spiritual questions he doesn't have a place to go to get answers he's not going to ask his friends because that might be embarrassing but he knows that all the Dr Schwartz prayed he's a spiritual person I can ask him and so I become like his pastor I become like the person that he knows that he can tap into and I've got example after example of how that's happened and so the other big thing that I think is really important is a physician who's prays and brings up spiritual can the concerns with their patients I can reach people that he can reach and he's an extremely seasoned ineffective evangelist but how is that true I get the homeless people that get off the bus and come. Into our office I don't have to go across the street thought crossed the tracks to the bad side of town to do it they come but I also get the Fortune 500 C.E.O.'s that I've got 2 of them that fly all around the world in their private jets he can knock on their doors a little tour Vangelis can't get past their gate he that you couldn't get past their secretary who schedules everything for them but they come to my office and I pray with them and they have spiritual questions and so people of all walks of life all races and all religions come to our offices day in and day out and we have the opportunity to beat them in the see them and they might never walk into the mentalistic meeting they might never walk into a church but we can be the opening wedge and I've gotten a lot better now I encourage my patients to come to our church for. Alternate between we have depression recovery we have chip we have. We don't stew we have diabetes undone in the full plate diet we alternate just these different things but we try to always have something going on so Pastor Mark these are the principles you basically taught me. But don't presume don't just say Ok now we're going to have prayer that doesn't give the patient the choice right so instead ask permission Is it Ok if I have a perm with you I think you can do this to a government hospital I think you can do this with any hospital I've asked to have one person in the seminar though say you know I'm in this hospital and they restrict and they say I can't pray and I can't talk about spiritual things and I told her well do the best you can and I went home and thought about it and thought no she raised really needs to find a job where she could do what God's calling her to do and now I would say you need to change your job why would you work somewhere where they handcuff you so you can't use the methods that you know to be effective. You know answer that question right now but once you open this door by it starting a prayer be ready to have a follow up. And the next thing I've been encouraged by this gentleman My mentor to share Scripture there is power in God's Word and the word itself is created of the word itself has the ability to create faith and faith is necessary for the changes that we want to see and so you can quote a scripture like Romans $831.00 If God is for us who can be against us or John $157.00 will ask whatever you will and it should be done for you just have a few verses that you memorize are open your Bible is even more powerful if a patient can read it open your Bible and just show them. What's going on a White says that prayer should be offered for the sick with calm faith I was shown that in case of sicknesses where the way is clear for the offering up of prayer for the sec the case should be committed to the Lord and calm faith not with a storm of excitement he alone is acquainted with the past life and of the individual and knows what his future will be he who is acquainted with the hearts of all man knows whether the person if raised up or glorify his name or dishonor Him by backsliding and apostasy all that we are required to do is to ask God to raise the sick up accordance in accordance with His will believing that he hears the reasons which we preserve in the fervent prayers offered if the Lord sees that one sees it will best honor Him He will answer our prayers but to urge recovery without submission to His will is not right. I've also learned maybe you can comment on this but all prayers that are prayed earnestly does God answer them he does what we don't know is this timing exactly so I've come to the conclusion that it's not even necessarily important that when I prayer that a person be physically healed necessarily there's a far greater thing than being physically healed and that's being healed spiritually. And as long as they're tapped and spiritually they're going to be healed physically in God's time so. Let me mention just one more thing and then we'll take some questions I think so I always get asked and before you ask the questions I'll just answer that but what do you do if somebody says no and. At 1st that was kind of awkward and 1st there be a lot of pregnant pause it'll be a I'd try to figure out a way to change the subject so how can I have no problem and that case will just be seen you back in 6 months and in the past I used to read a little n.p. in the church no prayer and I would try not to bring that up any more but now are charts are computerized. And I use a scribe so I don't even look at the computer when I'm talking to a patient and so it's gotten to the point now that I ask the no prayer patience over and over and over again but I don't have a pregnant pause it's easier to change the subject but a couple times now it's happened that I've asked a patient that had no n.p. in their chart and by the way I wanted things after do is have a prayer and one of the guys of oh no doc I'm an atheist remember and I was like oh yeah idea remember. I'm sorry he said but since you brought it up can I ask you a question and we just had another 20 minute conversation about spiritual things because he asked me I won't get into it but he asked me how could even Jellicoe support Donald Trump and gave you my answer on that. So he has his response was if he hasn't broken all 10 he's broke at least 6 of the commandments. Answered that to the best of my ability about how he's given the power of the Supreme Court they're looking for power now and right when that happened they just move the embassy and Israel and so these are things that the evangelical see as very very important because of their misinterpretation of last day prophecy and so I share with them our understanding of prophecy and he said I've never heard that before he says so I really have a question I've read the Bible through 6 times or 5 times I just can't see how a God of love could allow things like the Holocaust so this was a 20 minute conversation with an atheist because I forgot to not pray with him and I didn't pray with him but we still had this conversation and actually resulted in me giving him. A book called God at war by Gregory Boyd He's an evangelical but he references the great controversy and he read it he got it off of Amazon he read it he says you know I've never heard that before so he's thinking and so now I stuck and there's another book I'd recommend to you called the great controversy so that was the very last visit and so now he's an inquisitive guy I suspect he's and he's a very influential well known. Home builder in our area very very very successful and I think he's reading it so I can't wait till he comes back another atheist I just offered to pray with just last week Odaka thank you but that's Ok I'm an I'm an atheist used to be I just change the subject as quick as possible and I'm like oh that care that's that's fine I'm just curious how did you come to that because now I know most atheists are reacting against the religion that they grew up with and I said you probably grew up somewhat religious because oh yeah we were we were Pentecostal you know so that that kind of explains I don't think you grew up with the God of the Bible be looked at me so what do you mean and so I'm getting a little bit more Bowl. I'm not taking no fork and he answers I'm not rolling over their choice he brought up the question asked the follow up question I'm just probing a little bit and usually as long as you're not judgment off you know I'm not trying to cram anything down their throat and I'm just exploring it by asking questions questions lead to more questions and he's like I haven't thought of that before and so just because they say no doesn't really mean well but usually when they say no it means their job as witnesses and so now I have a Jehovah's Witness who says No I said l.g. do you pray and they go you know I say my own prayers and I say Ok would you like to pray and I let them pray and they'll pray and actually after doing that once or twice most of the Jehovah's Witness patients placed in a right or basis not let me pray and so it's broken down those barriers and just got to be a little persistent times. That was just close a. Close on one more thing that I think some Porton. The final thing is God gets blamed for the diseases in our world every single day not a day goes by that I don't hear a patient say why is God doing this to me or why is God doing this to my family and so on and we address that by addressing their spiritual concerns it comes up over and over as an opportunity to say you know this isn't the work of God This is the work of the devil that turns into a spiritual conversation in defense of God and I think that's important that we pick that up as well so why don't you come back up here. You can have the final word and then we'll take some questions your one of my physician friends tells this story he asked his patient he said Is it Ok if I pray with you in the patient looked at him and said Doc I'm an atheist but if prayer makes you feel good and treat me better go ahead and do it and so there's a lot of time let me just jump on that I've had patients say that several times I don't believe it but it makes you feel better go ahead of it always makes me feel sad Exactly and so by opening the door what we're doing when we say May I pray with you is it Ok if I pray with you we are allowing the person to have that freedom of choice to say no but also we're opening the door for a spiritual conversation later Dr Schwartz men's Chand about. Pris sharing a Bible text with your patients there is a way that you can do that now that you maybe wouldn't have been able to do that last year the year before and that is with the prescription pad that we have given you you know that I trust that each of you have gotten one of our prescription pads with the bible promise on it with the police a prescription from the master physician Let's suppose you feel quite rushed Let suppose you feel uncomfortable one of the things you can start doing this with is just taking out a prescription pad and saying you know what John I'm praying for you you hand it to them John here's a little prayer I have written for you dear dear John. I know that there's a loving God in heaven that cares for you and will give you faith and courage I want to just write that down for you here take that read it before you go to bed you can use those prescription pads as in a quick office writing a Bible text John here's a promise for you some 461 God is our refuge and strength write it out hand it to them that can make a real difference last little story and one of you remember I started by telling you about a front page article in c.n.n. in in USA Today which of course is is there basically it's owned by the same parent company as c.n.n. is but one of the things in that article that impressed me early on is a study that was done with cardiology patients people who had just gone through a heart procedure Dr Randolph Byrd in San Francisco had. Divided up his patients and they were in that time about 20300 patients and he divided them up into 2 groups one group were prayed for by Christians and the other group was not prayed for the people that were being prayed for did not know that they were being prayed for the people that weren't being prayed for didn't know they weren't being prayed for that the report on that study indicated that the people that were being prayed for had shorter hospital stays they had less infection and they needed West medication and Dr Bird said response to that was that if intercessory prayer were a medication. It would be malpractise not to prescribe it so Dr Come on up you may have some questions about intercessory prayer what Doc has mentioned I think is critical asking permission respecting the person that you're dealing with showing tenderness love and care but opening the door for spiritual conversations and opportunities any questions that you have situations that may be challenging for. The or to the morning stream were. Good to have and I find my. Sensitivity to this very fact it. Can be emotionally thrown off I'm not in the right. Frame of mind keeps me from having the right kinds of conversations with patients. But you know I'm learning. To pray with patients form one hospice physician right now and I remember this one case where the leader seemed. Very sure stuff for flu patients to be very very dangerous and just kind of rambling randomly and very anxious and just talking to you know all the time and. As we sat there for awhile you know I offered to pray. And ohmage just completely change your. Interaction with me at least she started to comment that I could tell she was struggling with things I. Could pray. I wanted to offer her Bible verse I don't buy that or station for nothing and that all hours but I had nowhere to write it was nothing in there you go. All right except right on. The board all these hospitals now leaves a smart person who had the market I wrote about or said here every time you feel anxious look right there and it's could try to fight your. And he difference he was he was notably serious sleeping a little bit and Schuster to. Listening to that's great now you have your little prescription pad you can write this down. Any other questions comments or observations any experiences that you have had in praying with patients that have made a difference that you can share with us yes. I'm right. You ready for a change we've got our church a lot of good options over here and now. And pretty good old school really yourself you really have to watch how kids I could change care as well one day she came and I didn't play with her because she had drug problems and family. I was a little busy this day and I played with them as a child walk to the door she was going to play with me today yeah right that's what they meant. She understood as probably most of your patients did that here was a physician that is of praying physician and you know that yes. You. Need to be here for a week. Was driving. You crazy if you didn't believe that. You will find a. Reason. And take a show me you keep raising me say look we prayed. And if you know me you're home fees and Misha who he's. Going to be like a chapel they want to give everyone a day because during a dual meeting you and they have to bring it was maybe turn here to go and help her with experience to late he only came to feel the same hated the same experience. 1. 802000000 Do you believe whatever we do you where even we should feel Ok even me. That yeah I would just say I used to feel somewhat almost burned out just going to work day in and day out because that was a job and once that changed into a ministry still get tired at times but I look forward to seeing what's going to happen today and so it's changed the whole perspective to prevent birth you know when you put yourself in the sense of mission and you see yourself as the representative of Christ loving grace and that office. If you put yourself in the center of God's activity and when you're in the center of God's activity there's a certain energy that flows into your body from the Holy Spirit and you don't feel that you're merely they are and the people are Coggs in the hospital machinery but every human being that walks to into your office or that you treat is a human being created in the image of God that you treat with dignity and respect in the Spirit works through you to touch their hearts in the you know so I have struggled to pray with patients for number of years and I enjoyed playing with them whenever I did I would just let certain ones that. Are maybe more critical and then years ago. The book of James seems to really. These things and it's a harsh reality. So I felt like I was treating my patients partially by just accident with some people so after that a just result got up to tried to operate a paper and that has made so much here. Much enjoy his own. Thing and thank you. Mine has a twofold heart one is that I had a patient probably 2 years ago maybe more probably 96 years old still cranking along and she told me a story about a mission doctor who had been her physician when he left the mission feeling came back to the us that he would pray every morning and that the Lord would give him like a flash in his mind maybe a vision or something of some of his patients he would have that day what was wrong with them and what he needed to do for them for the hard to diagnose patients and so I thought well that's interesting so I started praying myself and it's interesting because many times I'll just be praying in my mind and the thought of just flashed into my mind thoughts about what's going on not always what's going on them physic. What was going on with them emotionally and spiritually and I had prayed I had heard a testimony about someone who got the gift of healing I thought Jesus who has the gift of healing these days I mean really we rely on all these externals but what about the real gift of healing like Jesus Well I started praying about it and I've now what I do is I as I pray I many times in my mind or with who I'm working with I asked the Lord to reveal the why what's going really on at their heart level and for example you have someone you want to help them with their lifestyle let's say you know you have a patient on the new quit smoking or quit caffeine because they've got a hearty rhythm or whatever and now and they'll say I can't do it I'm just you know I'm too addicted to whatever or I just know is that how I cope with my Strasser where I don't want to change now so why do you think that is we get those amazing conversations and just leading them to the Lord then to be their healer of the real issue is as powerful and I have seen spontaneous healings to a man who close by my sharing with you a story that I'd like to pray for you I was traveling in South America and in a country that will remain unnamed and I was scheduled to speak at the Congress there in that country there was an Adventist congressman who arranged for me to speak there so I was going to speak on physical mental spiritual well being I got to the Congress and shortly after the event was to take place the congressman came out and he said Can we speak privately I said Sure he said the president of our country is away he's in China and he's negotiating some business deals for our country the vice president of our country is in charge the vice president has been up for 3 straight nights he hasn't slept. The teachers are on strike and the nurses are on strike for of higher wages there are marches in the streets in very heavy protests would you be willing to talk to the vice president and I said certainly now in these protocol visits I've visited previously with presidents of nations and political officials usually it takes us weeks to arrange these protocol visits one of the things in the protocol visits are you never reach you wait for the president of this country to reach out his hand you don't embrace them you don't touch them it's after but the congressman said to me he said I will take you right now we'll go through the back door of the White House in this particular country of course it was in the United States but he said I know the guards I have called the vice president he's willing to see you and so we were taken there him this limousine and we came to the back door we came through the back door we had the little waiting room that we waited in and then I was ushered into the vice president's office or the meeting room next to his office he came out all disheveled his hair was messed up his shirt was not tucked in it was down he obviously hadn't shaved for the last few days now on the way I said to this had been his Congressman tell me everything I need to know about the vice president does he have any faith at all he's Jewish he has a Jewish background is he a practicing Jew I don't think so I think he's a secular Jew. Tell me about his personality where was he born. Everything you can so I knew a lot about him before I got there we walked in and I knew that our time would be limited and as we sat down together I said I called him by name I had known his name I had practiced the pronunciation again and again so I wouldn't fumble the pun pronunciation too badly and as we sat down I said to him I understand this has been a hard 3 days for you and he looked up at me and he said sir you talk about a hard 3 days the nurses are on strike the hospital personnel are the hospital administrators are going crazy the educate the educators are on strike our president is gone my phone is ringing people are walking into my office asking and asking and asking for more and more and more he kind of put his head in his hands he looked up and he said I be emotionally exhausted I looked at him and I said Sir can I share with you what an ancient Jewish prophet told a king who was in a very similar situation that you're him Can I share with you what a time that Israel was filled with conflict and chaos and instability may I share that with you he said Certainly. I gave him the background advice say a 26 and read to him that will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed upon the because he trusts in the and then I said sir I explained the text to him about that there's a peace that comes that's beyond us of peace in in our hearts when there is conflict in the streets of peace in our society and then I said Can I make Is it Ok for me to pray with you he said yes and he stood I will after where I was and walked over and threw my arms around the vice president of this country totally out of protocol he can a looked at me and we began to pray and I prayed for that man at the end of the prayer he we did a few formalities and then he said thank you for coming you may leave and he said to the Congressman I'd like you to stay I walked out by myself and sat in the little room and I was a little bit shaken because I thought what's happening in that room now I'm not president the Congress came in came out all smiles and he said I want to tell you what the vice president told me he said all week people have been coming into my office begging for higher wages threatening could Joly here a man walked in and he said he prayed he shared a scripture My heart is at peace this is the most outstanding thing that has happened to me when you pray for others when you share a Bible text with others it takes the stress that they've been experiencing and gives them a calm Let's pray together Father in heaven we thank you that we are medical missionaries for Jesus. That we are physicians and dentists and medical providers but we're more than that that we are ambassadors of Christ ambassadors of your love your grace and your power father teach us to have the right words but more than that have the right spirit because we know that when our hearts are right with you that the Holy Spirit will give us opportunities to share your love and grace with others and that you will work on the hearts of our patients even before they came into the office to prepare the soil of their heart for the seed of your word so teach us how to be compassionate how to be kind how to be loving how to be respectful but teach us not to be timid in sharing who we are and the belief we have in you and may we see miracles of your grace in the hearts and minds of patients in the rice name. Thank you for joining us go and pray with your patients and share the word of God with what we got. 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