But if you refuse to serve the Lord, then choose today whom you will serve…But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord. Joshua 24:15 NLT
Loop-holes, plea bargains, gray areas, bending the rules, personal choice, look out for number one, listen to your heart, it’s your life, you did what you had to do, No regrets, et cetera. We are familiar with these euphemisms that attempt to distract us from wrongdoing; however, when we travel down a path of compromise, the journey always leads to negative outcomes with consequences.
Compromise in our personal life is always a lose-lose situation, if we must choose worldly standards over God’s requirements.
Compromise on a job usually equates to using dishonest tactics by bending the rules.
I have experienced a very interesting nursing career where I have witnessed many cover-ups and have been asked to compromise.
Many years ago, I was at the point in my career where I had relocated to a state that had an over-abundance of nurses. After two months of job searching, my savings were dwindling, and I began to feel desperate.
I was finally hired at a private Rehabilitation facility where I experienced my first medication administration error. Although the standard nursing protocol for medication administration is not to pre-pour medications, the facility’s policy was to prepare medications ahead of time (removing them from the prescription bottle or dose-pack which contained all identification markers: resident’s name, name/dose of the medication). The outside of the cups were labeled with a handwritten version of the resident’s first name, and the cups were placed on a tray in alphabetical order.
If you are in the health profession, then you are already thinking, “Red Flag.” A resident came to the office door and I asked, “How are you doing Josh?” His reply was that he felt good and was having fun at the dinner party. An hour later, my heart skipped several beats when the real Josh appeared for his evening medications.
At that point, I realized that I had previously administered Josh’s medications to John. As I prepared another cup of Josh’s medications, all nursing protocols for safe medication administration begin to shout loudly inside of my head: “Why didn’t I ask the resident to state his name?”
When I notified the On-call Director, I was informed that alcoholic drinks were served at the party, and the resident answered to someone else’s name, and didn’t recognize his usual medications because he was drinking. Red flag: Residents admitted to the facility have a history of substance abuse diagnoses…why are alcoholic drinks served?
I accepted full accountability for the error of not practicing one of the Rights of Medication Administration: Right Patient; Ask the patient to state his/her name. As I spoke with the Psychiatrist, he made a joke and stated the additional medication would make the resident sleep and I would have one less worry for the evening. I can recall going into the bathroom and crying because I realized that I was facing the consequences of venturing into Satan’s territory for the sin of compromise.
God made certain that I would learn a life-changing lesson. I was instructed not to document the Incident, because the Director would be responsible for the follow-up. My expectation was that I would complete an Incident report, and face a disciplinary write-up for a Medication Misadventure. When I was informed that documentation was not required because the resident did not experience side-effects, I realized that I had an immediate decision to make: (1) Keep my well-paying job and continue to sin against God, compromise nursing ethics, my nursing license, and patient safety, or (2) resign without having another job.
I was extremely disappointed with myself for going against everything that I stood for, as a Believer and as a Nurse. I prayed a Prayer of Confession and prior to my shift, I resigned from duty. In my exit interview, I was informed that the resident was doing well, and that I was overreacting by leaving.
There are times when we feel desperate and the anxieties of life cause us to make decisions based on our feelings, and our situation. Yes, I was fully aware of the facility’s protocol on pre-pouring medications during my first day of orientation. I knew that in order to keep this job that I would be forced to compromise. It was a choice based on a complete lack of faith in God.
The life of the Believer is not a life where we go with the majority, follow mainstream society, make decisions based on feelings or our situation. It is living a faith-based life where we say, “No” to compromise which leads to sin, in every situation.
In His mercy, God spared me from the consequences of breaching nursing protocols. It was a lesson well-learned. Since that incident, I have been tested many times to cover-up or look the other way in my work environments. Because I stood firm, God has always protected me from harms way, and provided for all my needs, especially when I was unemployed due to job pressures to go against His commands.
I share this real life experience because Satan will use our jobs as leverage to place doubt in God and cause us to develop over-confidence in our own abilities.
Choose God by exercising faith and trust in Him regardless of your current or pending financial status. If choosing God causes you loss of your job, have confidence that He is Jehovah-Jireh, our Provider.
Thank you God. I choose you!
Challenge for today: Choose God!
Chapter for today: Matthew 6
Prayer for today: Dear God, I empty myself of all desires that lead to the sin of compromise. I ask for your strength in the times of my weakness, and forgiveness in the times that I fail to choose you, and the times that I fail to rely on you. Thank you for being my Provider. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen!
Sonya Johnson Ruiz
I dedicate this article to my Nursing friends and colleagues: KH, LS, SB, WC, AW, & JS.