This was originally posted 5/31/2010
I had a short conversation last night with someone. I made a statement and their reply invoked in me the following vision.
I see a battlefield. In the midst of war, there is an overwhelming sense of dread and chaos. Bombs going off, the sounds of gunfire and battle cries fill the air. I see one person down and a couple of people trying to cover him as he tries to examine himself to discover the extent of his damage. He can move, but it seems pretty bad, as if he could function, but not as he could before.
Then I see the medic coming to the rescue. This medic is focused on delivering the hope of life to those that find themselves at a position similar to the one I just described, all at the cost of his own personal safety. He his selfless; risking his own life for the sake of others.
As this medic approaches, I see the downed comrade fighting off the medic, defensively. I see the look in his eye as he does so and recognize that the pain he is enduring has blinded him from understanding the intent of the seeming intruder. Even though he may recognize the medic personally, or even be able to identify him based on apparel, the fear that this person could possibly invoke more pain is all too real at the moment, and therefore all defenses are up.
Now, I thought about that. At that time, what is the next course of action? I understand how this applies metaphorically, but in this specific instance, what is the next course of action? I know many people who have been in armed forces and in wars. The medic has a job to do. In that instance, sadly for the one on the defensive, the medic must go to the next person in need. Why? Because he doesn’t have time to waste trying to help someone who refuses the help. Others could be dying and require his attention too much to waste his time proving that he’s there to help.
Metaphorically, this is symbolic of our call to “rescue” the lost sheep—our call for evangelism. We are the “medics” sent in the battlefield of earth to rescue the lost and fallen in the world. Jesus tells us not to cast our pearls before swine (Matthew 7:6), meaning that we must have discernment when it comes to trying to help people. You can’t help those who are not yet ready to receive help. Our time is too precious to waste on those who won’t receive it at the time we are offering.
Perhaps on the medic’s return trip, the previously defensive comrade will have a better understanding that the medic is there to help and be more receptive to his aid. Perhaps by the time the medic comes back around, it’s too late. The medic cannot dwell on such things, for he has a job to do, and worrying about lost opportunities will do nothing but distract him from his purpose.