Sometimes we have the weirdest experiences in elevators. They can be like movie screens, displaying the hardships of a person’s life before a varied audience, or they can be like a silent film, leaving the viewers to “fill in the blanks.” Elevators in hospitals are the most callous. They don’t care if you are rich, poor, healthy, hurting, overly emotional or totally indifferent, they just don’t care!
The other day I was at a hospital to visit a friend that was struggling with life. On the way up to their floor I was riding with a lady that seemed overwhelmed and quite anxious. If it were even possible, I think she would have jumped out of the elevator even before the door finally opened. “What’s the matter” I asked? She looked at me like I had an alien sitting on my shoulder sticking his tongue out at her. “Nothing that a few million bucks wouldn’t fix!” “Really, let me see what I have. It can’t be that bad!” At this point she went on to tell me that her husband was getting ready to be released but the hospital bills were piling up faster than she could add them up.
Over the journey of just a few floors I saw what should have been a grateful heart over the healing of her husband turn to stone over the worry of money. I told her; “your husband gets to go home!” Too many times I witness the husband or wife, or child or infant that will never leave that hospital floor. Too many times I am reminder of the brevity of life and the fragile balance between fear and gratitude. But life goes on.
When I reached my destination the anxieties, I witnessed on the elevator were simply washed away by the scene I walked into. There was death and hopelessness circling the room, and there seemed no clear way out. All hope for this room was encapsulated in a prayer to Jesus that ensued. This prayer was a living testimony to Christ presented in a way that was without selfishness or fear, it was simply a cry for a holy moment, a moment when Christ would fill the room with His presence. It was beautiful and hope was found abundant.
On the way down I met a father who had just become a dad for the first time. He was filled with excitement, joy and gratitude, even though he was also exhausted. He spoke words of affirmation and blessing and was openly praising God for the blessing of new life. Yes, elevators can be a strange thing.