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We have all seen them. The patient that could be diagnosed from across the office. Intensely red swollen eyes, profuse tearing, light sensitivity, obviously uncomfortable, ratty tissue or washcloth in their hand constantly dabbing the eyes. They look miserable, and you do not want what they have. Last month we had a number of these patients in our office and despite our usual precautions I became the patient. It started with an irritation and a little redness, but within a few days I felt like those patients looked. I had epidemic keratoconjunctivitis with poor vision, intense chemosis, injection and bilateral limbus-to-limbus corneal infiltrates. Severe. Painful. When my colleagues saw me the exam was met with a uniform “Whoa!”. I had to cancel surgery and clinic and isolate myself from the ones I loved.

I began to experience what it was like to be a patient. One that was incapacitated, helpless, humiliated, and humbled. It was difficult to relinquish control to others who were now giving me advice rather than others seeking mine. I had to set aside my own position and be comfortable in my new one as a patient. Trust. Obey. Pray.

It was during this time that God began to lay on my heart in a small yet deeper way what Christ did for me. Christ became one of us. He set aside his position next to the Father and humbled Himself even to the point of death. Jesus trusted, obeyed, and relied upon prayer with the Father.

Philippians 2:6-8 says “Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death- even death on a cross!”

It is hard to fathom in reality the incredible faith it took for Christ to be so humiliated, tortured, and subject to immense suffering. He did it for you and I. As 1 John 3:1 tells us “How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” We are His children with completely unmerited favor. The concept of redemption is incredible, the plan was perfect, and the path is eternal. Galatians 2:20 says that “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

We have received an epidemic of grace and His grace is sufficient. That is the gospel.

Matthew McCauley, M.D.

COS Vice President