Dr. English lived in a small town where everyone was a neighbor and a friend. “Doc” practiced medicine as all physicians of his era did, through house calls and the medicines found in his little black medical bag. He faced bouts of Scarlet Fever and Measles in his littlest patients, while treating Tuberculosis, Pneumonia, and Arthritis in his older patients.
One of his young expectant mothers suffered from a weak heart brought on by rheumatic fever when she was a girl. He insisted on driving her to the hospital himself when her labor pains began. For weeks after the death of a two-year-old child whom he had misdiagnosed with a stomach virus when the child had been accidentally poisoned, he told townspeople that he would never forgive himself, although the grieving family knew he’d done all he could and would never have blamed him.
“Doc” had compassion on those he cared for, perhaps all the more because he knew them. He had grown up with many of them. Dr. English had such compassion and care towards his patients that he even felt their pain and shared the concern of family members over their ill loved ones. He did not leave his work at the end of the day, and a house call in the middle of the night was a regular occurrence.
Compassion is part of the human spirit and it comes from the Hand of God, Who has perfect compassion towards us:
The Lord answered “Can a woman forget her nursing child And have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, but I will not forget you. “Indeed, I have inscribed a picture of you on the palms of My hands; Your city walls Zion are continually before Me. Isaiah 49:15-16
A compassionate doctor with a big heart once served a small community. Even into his old age when his steps had slowed and his own health began to wane, he answered the call of a patient in need. How much more will our God be there for us when we call to Him. When doubt threatens, remember that He has you in the Palm of His Hand—forever.