Many times when difficult situations arise, people ask, “What would Jesus do?” A situation such as this was presented to my dear husband last night.
Jake was on call this weekend. At 11 o’clock last night while we were nestled in bed and sound asleep, he received a call that made us both jump up and nearly wet the bed sheets. He answered it and I listened to the awkward exchange of words between a barely awake Jacob and a distraught farmer. It became apparent Jake was going to have to go to the clinic and meet the farmer there in 40 minutes. Jake was frustrated because 40 minutes was, in his words, “too much time to go straight to the clinic, but not enough time to fall back asleep.”
As he lay there half asleep having a fit that you would expect from a three-year-old child, I muttered the words, “How would Jesus handle this situation?” I was met with a response I wasn’t ready for. Jake said, “He would’ve become a carpenter and not dealt with veterinary medicine. Nobody calls in the middle of the night for an emergency home remodeling. ‘Oh, can’t go to the synagogue, the stairs are squeaking again. Gotta call that carpenter!'”
Knowing that my efforts to get him to see the best of the situation were fruitless, I let it be. In the midst of the griping, I heard him say, “They’re black cattle. It’s nighttime. How did he even see it?” He set an alarm for 37 minutes from the end of the phone call, but I’m pretty sure he spent most of it whining about having to go to the clinic in 40 minutes. In fact, he nodded off just before the alarm rang with a shattering sound could make dogs howl. He dressed and went to the clinic. After he left, I don’t remember when he came back to bed, but at least he showered before he crawled in.
As veterinarians we expect these calls to happen on occasion and do our duty willingly–for the most part without complaining. But sometimes when you’re too tired to think you say the darnedest things. Besides, at least it wasn’t me this time ;).