The Bible says in Proverbs 17:22 that A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.
Laughter really is the best medicine. It also has the best co-pay and better yet, you will never run out of refills.
I joke that the doctor had prescribed me medication for my memory, but I kept forgetting to take it.
As a licensed NY state retail pharmacist, I dispense anything less than the best. I was licensed July 2001 and was saved in March 2002. If the order was reversed, I might not be stuck in this profession today. At least in my circles, they get excited you tell them you are called to preach. They get excited that you want to jump into full time ministry. And when they hear you are a pharmacist they quickly change their tune and say, “but God needs good pharmacists. Go back to your seat, son. Next?” And I am sure God needs some good Christian bartenders too.
On a positive side, pharmacy has truly given me some answers for America. Pharmacy seems to have given me a great explanation for much of the lack of power in today’s gospel message. I share these truths out in my “Jesus is not a flu shot” series that are in my blog archives.
I also see that pharmacy is a great barometer for the spiritual sickness of our nation, not just an indicator of our declining physical health. America proudly told God in the roaring 20’s that we can now make it without Him, and in the 60’s we shook our fists at God and said we want our way once and for all. The theme song for America quickly went from My country ’tis of thee to I can’t get no satisfaction.
Soon, the family altar that once held the Bible now held a television. NFL stadiums replaced churches as Americas Sunday house of worship. Prayer was taken out of the schools and in it’s place came a skyrocketing plethora of perversion from Planned ParentHood to Pot to pornography. Teachers now restrain kids with ADHD prescriptions, and see poor graduation rates. Schools hire many child molesters and pornographers masquerading as teachers, and harbor psychos who are gunning down their classmates. Before God and prayer were removed, there was that occasional offense with spitballs but now it’s become free for all. And only getting worse.
Yes, America’s come a long way, baby. And she is closer to destruction than ever before.
The reason pharmacy is an indicator for where we were spiritually and where we are now can be seen in our love of drugs. Let’s just look at the legal ones prescribed by a medical professional. It is legal to kill babies and it is legal to take drugs. That doesn’t automatically prove that something legal is acceptable to God. Not all drugs are bad, but the system is flawed and it is an evolution-based system that says you are chemicals that came together over millions of years, so you simply add more chemicals and it’s happily ever after.
It has you look to a Physician who has exalted himself as God and bypasses the true and living Great Physician who humbled Himself to become a man. The devil is the master counterfeiter, and I see in pharmacy over and over the devil’s strategy of replacing biblical promises and biblical principals with prescriptions and pills.
Jesus is the Prince of Peace. Instead there is Xanax, Valium, Ativan, Buspar, and other anti- anxiety medication. The joy of the Lord is our strength. Who needs Jesus when there is Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft, Luvox, Celexa, Lexapro, Wellbutrin, Wellburin SR, Wellbutrin XL, and Effexor XR? Just ignore the warnings these anti-depressants may increase the risk of suicide and you will be fine.
Jesus calmed the storms. The bible says in Ephesians 4:31 to Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
Who needs the Bible when you have anti-psychotics like Abilify (at $900 a month), Seroquel XR (#60 400 mg costs $1,500!), Latuda, Risperdal, and the Benzodiazepines?
Jesus came to set the captives free. John 8:36 says If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. Who needs Jesus to deliver from addictions when there is methadone, Nicorette, Suboxone, Chantix, buproprion, Subutex, and Antabuse?
It is interesting to hear testimonies of teachers who had 40 to 50 year careers that spanned the pre-television and post-television eras. They can state they noticed a clear difference in children’s attention spans before, and after, the TV became an American staple. Kids before could sit for story time but soon after the TV came on, they couldn’t. A.D.D, or A.D.H.D. (Attention-Deficit-Disorder or A-D-hyperactivity-D) suddenly showed up almost overnight. Don’t worry, Nickelodeon and Disney, keep pumping your programs. We have hope for you and those you are programming! Pick your poison, I mean pill. Concerta ER, Ritalin, Adderall, Dextroampehtamines, or Daytrana for starters. Don’t let the $600 cost scare you. Your copay is $0 for ADD meds so you never see the cost. Or the consequences.
The ultimate symptom of the American we-are-set-on-our-path-so-God-leave-us-alone attitude is in the maintenance medications. A creation scientist described modern medicine this way. When the car engine light goes off, you can stop and fix the engine or and just unplug the warning light and continue driving. If we are depressed or anxious, it is a spiritual imbalance not a chemical one. Yet we often opt for meds, which treats the side effect (anxiety/depression) and ignores the cause (needing to get right with God.) So in essence, as a Pharmacist I am giving you something that only treats the symptoms and yet as a Christian, I am often forced to withhold the cure. And if I do provide both explanations, at the very best I am telling you 2 different things by my words and actions. At worst, my actions speak louder than words. That is called hypocrisy.
May I meddle a moment? Our diets, lifestyle, junk food, holiday gorging, fast food, fried food, and pizza and wings are destroying us. We eat that way for 30 years, plug up our arteries, and end up with a heart attack. Instead of changing we just take medications. And more medications. And more medications. Lipitor for the cholesterol buildup, insulin for the belly buildup, and Co-enzyme Q10 for the Lipitor buildup. After the 5th pill every new addition is from a side effect of the previous med. You never get off them and it seems the goal is now whoever dies with the most pills wins.
Yet, you don’t care, and I don’t either because our food tastes better than the fried bugs and bowls of rice the rest of the world eats. I go on spurts when I eat healthier and even order green things from the drive-thru (besides Shamrock shakes) but I can’t escape the American diet for very long. And with the allurement of a cholesterol router-rooter at my disposal, available generic now as well, my motivation is far lower than my HDL good cholesterol levels.
The average American spends more a week on their morning coffee and donuts than a family in the Philippines spends to eat per month. We love our combos. What is interesting is when you combine a carb and protein, your body tends to store it as fat. A simple combo might be why more and more of us look so jumbo.
I write this as I enjoy a bite of my chocolate caramel deluxe muffin. New from Tim Hortons.
The number 1 addiction in America is sugar. I am fairly certain the kinetics (meaning how quickly something gets absorbed and gets out of your system) for high fructose corn syrup is similar to crack cocaine. I joke I am a coke addict. You might very well be addicted to Pepsi instead. Whether the crack cocaine theory is true or not, one thing I do know is my children turn into little monsters minutes after eating pudding frosted chocolate peanut butter sugar smacks or whatever breakfast cereal they choose.
OK, relax, the meddlin’ is over. It is safe to return to your regularly scheduled coffee break. And my muffin.
What is the solution to all this? I should say what is the prescription for all this?
I can start with the prescription for revival. The Bible says in 2nd Chronicles 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. The problem is this has become a very big IF.
God is not talking to the lost, he is talking to the church. IF. IF we care more about God than the Superbowl, Star Wars, and Starbucks. IF we would be at least be willing to fast and pray for our nation once a month. IF we would spend more time thinking about heaven than living in a fantasy world. IF we would cast down our America idols and we cared more about God’s house than what goes on in the White House. IF at least Christians had the BIBLE and not the TV as their family altar.
If Christians spent more time in the text than texting (note to self….), our face in the book more than FaceBook, and were in the Bible as much as we are on our blogs (note to self….), concerned about who is saved and lost as much as who wins Master Chef (note to self….), and spent more time talking to God via KNEE mail, verses our friends over e-mail, America might have a chance.
America’s prescription for revival ran out of refills almost 100 years ago. It is time that Christians went back to the Great Physician for a follow up visit. That might happen IF enough Christians get sick of the side effects of our present way of doing things.
1st Peter 4:17 says For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? It is time for things to get right at the church. Then we would see the revival, deliverance of sin, and power of God that the world would have to acknowledge.
Then America just might see the futility of pharmacy. And see the cure by looking to Jesus.