“God has given me joy each day, even if it isn’t comfortable. He is continually displaying that all things will be made new, including the joy He gives.” – Lindsay Cox
High adventure – that’s how nurse Lindsay Cox describes her job in the labor and delivery unit at a local hospital. Every day, Lindsay cares both for mothers celebrating the arrival of babies and women whose babies did not survive or were born with serious health issues. In spite of the stress, Lindsay describes her job as a labor and delivery nurse as, “inside her comfort zone.” But when she felt challenged to serve both as a nurse and a pastoral care volunteer at Watermark’s QuestCare Clinic, Lindsay was reluctant.
Staffed by a team of medical professionals and Watermark volunteers, QuestCare Clinic provides much more than free medical care and health education to people in need. It’s a place where patients can receive prayer and biblical encouragement. While volunteering as a nurse seemed feasible for Lindsay, talking about the gospel with a total stranger sounded impossible.
Growing up as a preacher’s kid in rural Oklahoma, Lindsay gained a lot of knowledge about Christ, but didn’t experience a lot of spiritual growth. When she left her town of 550 people for college at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, she was completely overwhelmed.
“I’d never been to a big city before and didn’t know anyone,” said Lindsay. “For the first time, I had to decide what my faith in Christ was going to mean to me. Thankfully, God got me involved with a Christian organization, and my relationship with Jesus grew. The Lord made changes in my life and in the lives of others around me. It was an eye-opening experience.
After college, Lindsay moved from Fort Worth to Dallas, which felt like starting all over again. When she came to Watermark and found out about Watermark’s urgent care clinic. It seemed like a logical place to use her skills as a nurse.
“I went to a training session and took some baby steps toward getting involved,” said Lindsay. “Spiritually, I love being poured into, but was afraid of pouring out. I’d never talked to a stranger about my faith. I worried I didn’t have enough Scripture memorized to be effective at pastoral care.”
Lindsay learned that before every appointment, patients complete a questionnaire on whether they would like to find out more about a relationship with Christ or if there is any way the staff might pray for them. Understanding the patients’ responses to those questions helped her feel more confident about engaging in spiritual conversations. Lindsay was nervous as she opened the door to meet with her first patient – a woman in her 30s. In addition to her medical needs, the woman questioned whether God still had a plan for her life in light of her difficult circumstances and string of bad choices. In her eyes, it seemed impossible that God could restore her broken spirit. In an instant, Lindsay knew she and her patient had some common ground.
“I felt the same way following a season of disbelief that God could redeem all of my story,” said Lindsay. “I wondered if He could restore my brokenness and repair my relationships with others. I shared the verse I was learning at the time – Revelation 21:5, which says that God is, ‘making all things new.’ I prayed and explained that God did have a plan for her life, and His grace was big enough to overcome all of her troubles.”
Since that first patient interaction, Lindsay says she’s taken new ground in trusting in the Lord. “God is teaching me that following Him isn’t about feeling safe and comfortable. It’s about stepping out and serving. As I’ve continued to engage in spiritual conversations, some have been great and others haven’t been 100% wonderful. But each conversation has led people to think about the Lord. If an awkward moment is all I had so suffer through, that’s OK.”
Lindsay now feels a renewed passion for serving families in the labor and delivery unit where she works full time. “It can be such a tough place as I work with broken families, women who have just lost a baby and people who are unprepared for parenting,” said Lindsay. “It was once hard to know how to act in those situations. Now God has helped me feel more natural with comforting patients and praying with families. God has given me joy each day, even if it isn’t comfortable. He is continually displaying that all things will be made new, including the joy He gives. He has provided so much, and that joy gets me through each day.”