More Wisdom: What Every Christian Should Know About Ebola

Hi! Thanks for coming by!

NOTE: Sorry I’m a day late! We are still Tuesday people!

As is a tradition with my blog and my book Fresh Hope Cleveland, I’m sharing something of great importance with you today. Something to make your life better today and tomorrow. This is also a news worthy issue.

This is an article I saw on Facebook that I thought was well worth sharing with everyone on my blog. After all, I live in Cleveland, Ohio, and much has happened to our community since the one nurse from Dallas came here last weekend.

This is an informative article written by an infectious disease physician. It is shown hear to help you and give you more information not to put fear into your heart. I hope the article gives you insight and peace of mind about what we do know about Ebola.
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Editors’ note: Along with being the senior pastor of the International Baptist Church in Santo Domingo, Dr. Miguel Núñez has practiced medicine in different capacities for more than 30 years. He is board-certified in internal medicine and in infectious diseases. He was also was an assistant professor of the Mount Sinai School of Medicine (1989-97) at Englewood Hospital and Medical Center in Englewood, New Jersey. For this reason we contacted him for information related to the current outbreak of the disease from the medical point of view and to offer some words of pastoral wisdom.

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What Every Christian Should Know About Ebola

Last Wednesday, the world awoke to the news that Erick Thomas Duncan, the first patient diagnosed with Ebola in the United States, had died of the disease. He had traveled from Liberia to Dallas, Texas, Ebola-story

and developed symptoms of the disease four or five days after arriving in the states. This news—along with the information that a nurse had contracted the virus in Spain as a consequence of having been in contact with a patient diagnosed with the disease—has been seen as cause for alarm in the Western world.

What is Ebola?

The Ebola virus belongs to the family of filoviridae, which is capable of causing hemorrhagic fevers in a similar manner as does the dengue virus and other viruses.

Five different species of the Ebola virus have been identified, known under the names the Zaire, Sudan, Ivory Coast, Bundibugyo, and Reston agents. The virus was first recognized in 1976, and small outbreaks have been reported in different places with different mortality rates depending on the species of virus. The current outbreak in West Africa is being caused by the Ebola-Zaire species.

When did the current crisis begin?

An outbreak of Ebola was reported in Guinea late last year and confirmed by the World Health Organization this past March. This was the first outbreak in West Africa, though previous outbreaks of lesser magnitude had been reported in Central Africa. Unfortunately, the disease was not contained. In recent months it has expanded to Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, and Senegal.

To date more than 4,000 deaths have been reported and more than 8,000 cases suspected or confirmed. This current mortality rate is about 50 percent. In previous outbreaks, mortality has ranged from 30 percent to 90 percent.

How is Ebola transmitted?

Most of the current cases of the disease have occurred by transmission from person to person through contact with secretions from an infected patient—either blood, urine, feces, saliva, semen, or sweat. These secretions need to gain access to mucous membranes (conjunctiva, inside the lips and mouth or genitals) to cause infection.

Transmission may also occur when these secretions are exposed to skin that has lost its integrity (wounds, abrasions, and so on). To date there is no confirmation that the virus can be transmitted through the respiratory tract, as can the influenza virus. Some transmissions have occurred by accident in medical staff working with patients infected with the disease. Cases of the infection have also occurred through contact with affected animals.

Compared to previous outbreaks, the spread of Ebola has been rapid. Previous outbreaks occurred in isolated rural populations with a smaller number of people, unlike this outbreak that has spread in urban centers. Knowing that previous outbreaks were contained by implementing basic infection control measures allowed us to understand that the disease is potentially containable through measures already known to medical science.

What happens to the body during an Ebola infection?

Like any disease, once the causative agent enters the body, it is followed by an incubation period during which the patient may not show any symptoms. In the case of the Ebola virus, the asymptomatic period varies from 6 to 10 days, with a range from 2 to 21 days in extreme cases. To our knowledge, patients do not appear to be infectious during this asymptomatic period.

The disease can start with symptoms common to other viral illnesses: fever, chills, malaise, headache, lack of appetite, muscle aches, cough, sore throat. Some patients may develop an erythematous rash over the whole body, accompanied by symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Other symptoms may appear later in the disease, such as bleeding in the areas of venipuncture (area where the veins are punctured for blood sample or placement of an IV catheter).

These findings may be accompanied by a decrease in white blood cells (leukopenia), decreased platelets count (thrombocytopenia), elevated liver enzymes, abnormal coagulation tests, and injury to the lungs and kidney. Patients who survive the disease usually improve after the tenth day.

What are the reasons to be hopeful about the diseases containment?
1. The causative organism has been known for about 40 years.

2. Medical science could control previous outbreaks with known infection control measures, even when they were implemented in less sophisticated regions in terms of medical care.

3. Even in the midst of this crisis, the outbreak that began in Nigeria and Senegal in August seems to be contained due to implementing infection control measures. In fact, it has been more than a month since Nigeria has reported a new case (September 5 being the last one), likewise in Senegal, which has not reported a new case since August 29.

4. In 1998, a case of Ebola in South Africa was not recognized early and potentially exposed to about 300 people. However, only one of them was infected due to implementing infection-control measures. In the same country, 35 doctors and nurses were involved in the care of two patients with Marburg virus (from the same family as Ebola). Of those, only one became infected, although the two cases were not initially recognized.

5. Multiple laboratories are working nonstop to find an effective treatment for the disease, and we know of at least two cases of American citizens who received monoclonal antibodies and responded favorably. One even improved significantly between 20 to 60 minutes after receiving the infusion of the medication. Two other cases were treated in Atlanta with positive outcomes. Obviously, every patient needs to be individualized, since we do not know if others will respond in the same way.

How should we react to the threat of Ebola?

While this outbreak may have been a surprise for the world, it was not a surprise for our God. His unstoppable will continues under his inscrutable wisdom. Not one inch of the universe escapes the control of our Lord.

For those of us who believe in a sovereign God, we know we’re called to remain calm in the midst of the storm. We find confidence not only or primarily in the belief that science will control this outbreak or that we will not be affected. Rather, we hope in the Lord. As the psalmist said, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1).

Let believers be the voice of peace amid the confusion. While much of this disease is still unknown, it is equally true that panic will not help us. The unbelieving world needs to see our trust in God amid this difficulty.

More ….Miguel Núñez serves as senior pastor of International Baptist Church and president of Wisdom and Integrity Ministries in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. He is a Council member of The Gospel Coalition. You can follow him on Twitter.

If you have any thoughts about Ebola, I’d welcome your comments.

Make it a great day!

God Bless You!
Nanci

October 22, 2014 at 7:49 pm Leave a comment

Job Networking Event ~ October 29

networking

~ Hi!

Here’s a great resource tip to help those looking for a job. As some of you know, my book Fresh Hope … Cleveland is filled with all sorts of great resources for your life. So I’m following that theme today and sharing another resource — a job networking event with you.

If you are looking for a job ~ networking is key to finding a satisfying position within a corporate culture that suits you! This is the last networking event offered for 2014. Details below.

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Job Networking Event

Wednesday, October 29th
6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Complimentary appetizers/cash bar

5975 Canal Rd.
Valley View, OH 44125
(formerly Hoggy’s, next to the Cinemark Theater)

Ohio CareerConnect (OCC), voted one of the top five finalists in the 2012 Connectors Choice Awards for “Networking Organization of the Year”, is a job seeker’s networking group geared toward career professionals in transition. Our meetings, which are held the last Wednesday of each month, are free and open to any professional, from any industry. Come, meet new people and begin to develop relationships that just might provide you a path to a new career opportunity. Guests are welcome, so we encourage you to invite a friend or colleague who is in career transition or considering a job change to attend our monthly meetings.

Register to attend this event ~ at Szarka Financial’s website.

Make it a great day!

God Bless You!
Nanci

October 14, 2014 at 5:56 pm Leave a comment

Wisdom ~ The Benefits of Right Thinking

thinking

Hi!
As you know, I haven’t shared anything lately. That’s because I’m trying to work on my new books “Blue Sky and a Park Bench” and it’s devotional companion. I’ll share more with you later on.

~ Here’s some MORE WISDOM for you today much like the things you’ll find in my book Fresh Hope … Cleveland.

Something Simple But Yet So Profound:

Right Thinking = Right Living
Right Living = A Better Life.

Here’s the question. So how do you get RIGHT THINKING?
1. You get it by feeding you mind something great all the time.
2. You get it by saying positive things (self-talk).
3. You GET IT BY READING AND MEDITATING AND ABSORBING God’s Word — from the Bible.

Suggestions: Listen to Christian TV and radio. Read books by Christian authors that help you grow.

Make it a great week!

God Bless You!
Nanci

September 30, 2014 at 8:11 pm Leave a comment

More Wisdom: Things Happen For You

href=”https://nancigravill.files.wordpress.com/2014/07/planswithsnoopy.jpg”>planswithsnoopy~

As you know, my book Fresh Hope … Cleveland, is all about RESOURCES. In Part 3 – I recommended 16 books that would be great resources for you. Here’s a little bit more about another book (a great resource) written by a writer/pastor. The WISDOM I am sharing today is all about how things happen FOR you. They do not happen to you.

Make it a great day!

God Bless You!

Nanci

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“I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord,”Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jer.29:11) Oh, the beauty of the thrice-repeated word plans. God is plotting for our good. In all the setbacks and slipups, He is ordaining the best for our future. Every event in our days if designed to draw us toward our God and our destiny.

Things happen for you ~ for your good no matter what the challenge, the hurt, the tears. God has good plans for your life.

To learn more, read the first chapter of Max Lucado’s book, You’ll Get through This: Help and Hope for Your Turbulent Times. http://teamlucado.com/downloads/YGTTonlineSampler.pdf

July 15, 2014 at 8:14 pm Leave a comment

More Wisdom: Forgiveness

"forgive"

“forgive”

~ As you know, my book Fresh Hope … Cleveland, is all about RESOURCES. In Part 3 – I recommended 16 books that would be great resources for you. Here’s a little bit more about another book (a great resource) written by a writer/pastor. The WISDOM I am sharing today is all about FORGIVENESS.

Make it a great day!

God Bless You!

Nanci

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Forgivness is not for the other person; It’s really for you!

Begin the process of forgiveness. Keep no lists of wrongs. Pray for your antagonists rather than plot against them. HATE the wrong without hating wrongdoers. Turn your attention away from what they did to you to what Jesus did for you. Outrageous as it may seem, Jesus died for them too. If he thinks they are worth forgiving, they are. Does that make forgiveness easy? No. Quick? Seldom. Painless?

To learn more, read the first chapter of Max Lucado’s book, You’ll Get through This: Help and Hope for Your Turbulent Times. http://teamlucado.com/downloads/YGTTonlineSampler.pdf

July 9, 2014 at 4:14 pm Leave a comment

More Wisdom: Gratitude

~ As you know, my book Fresh Hope … Cleveland, is all about RESOURCES. In Part 3 – I recommended 16 books that would be great resources for you. Here’s a little bit more about another book (a great resource) written by a writer/pastor. The WISDOM I am sharing today is all about GRATITIDE.

Make it a great day and have a safe and happy 4th of July!

God Bless You!

Nanci

 

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To the credit of Jesus they were healed. … Their spines began to straighten, skin began to clear, and smiles began to return. The mass of misery became a leaping, jumping, celebrating chorus of health.

… What did your wife say? How did the kids respond? How does it feel to be healed? Jesus waited for the ten men to return and say thanks. But only one of them came back.

Even Jesus was astonished. You’d think that neither fire nor hail could have kept them from falling at Jesus’ feet. Where were the other nine? It’s easy to speculate.

Some were too busy to be thankful … Too busy, too cautious, too self-centered, too arrogant … to close to home? If this story is any indication, nine out of ten people suffer from ingratitude. Epidemic proportions. Why?

Author Max Lucado, puts it this way (paraphrased, some word for word):

Flying home from the Midwest one night, a snow storm delayed his arrival in Dallas. He raced to the gate in hopes of catching the final flight of the night for San Antonio. To Mr. Lucado’s surprise, there were still seats available. Even more surprising was the fact that he was put in First Class.

He boarded the plane and nestled down in the wide seat with extra legroom.

Color me thankful. Not every passenger was as appreciative as I was. A fellow across the aisle was angry because he only had only one pillow. With the attendants scrambling to lock doors and prepare for the delayed departure, he was complaining about insufficient service. “I paid extra to fly first class.” He said. I am accustomed to better attention. I want another pillow!”

On the other side of the aisle, yours truly smiled like a guy who had won the lottery without buying a ticket. One passenger grumbled; the other was grateful. The difference? The crank paid his way into first class. My seat was a gift.

On which side of the aisle do you find yourself?

If you feel the world owes you something, brace yourself for a life of sour hours. You’ll never get reimbursed. The sky will never be blue enough; the steak won’t be cooked enough; the universe won’t be good enough to deserve a human being like you … “A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he deserves.”

The grateful heart on the other hand, sees each day as a gift. Thankful people focus less on the pillows they lack and more on the privileges they have … the grateful heart is like a magnet sweeping over the day, collecting reasons for gratitude. A zillion diamonds sparkle against the velvet of your sky every night. Thank you, God.

Read the first chapter of Max Lucado’s book, You’ll Get through This: Help and Hope for Your Turbulent Times. http://teamlucado.com/downloads/YGTTonlineSampler.pdf

July 1, 2014 at 4:44 pm Leave a comment

More Wisdom: The In-Between Times

~ Happy Summer!

 

As you know, my book Fresh Hope … Cleveland, is all about RESOURCES. In Part 3 – I recommended 16 books that would be great resources for you. Here’s a little bit more about another book (a great resource) that’s wonderful especially if you are going through some difficulties. And who isn’t?! Below I’ve also shared a link to a video from a TV series that will inspire you too!

Make it a great day!

God Bless You!

Nanci

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A situation starts — that’s the beginning. Resolution comes quickly sometimes but many times it comes after many, many months on what I call the in-between times. We all have them. The times we sit and wait on the answers.

Below is some text from a great book You’ll Get through This by Max Lucado. I’m sure you’ll want to read more after reading this. Enjoy!  ~ Nanci

Joseph emerged from his prison cell bragging on God. Jail time didn’t devastate his faith; it deepened it.

And you? You aren’t in prison, but you may be infertile or inactive or in limbo or in between jobs or in search of health, help, a house, or a spouse. Are you in God’s waiting room? If so, here is what you need to know: while you wait, God works.

“My Father is always at work,” Jesus said (John 5:17 NIV). God never twiddles his thumbs. He never stops He takes no vacations. He rested on the seventh day of creation but got back to work on the eighth and hasn’t stopped since. Just because you are idle, don’t assume God is.

Read the first chapter of Max Lucado’s book, You’ll Get through This: Help and Hope for Your Turbulent Times. http://teamlucado.com/downloads/YGTTonlineSampler.pdf

At the end of this 20-minute video is a wonderfully inspiring story about Danny Cahill from the TV show The Biggest Looser. Watch: http://www.joycemeyer.org/BroadcastHome.aspx?video=Knowing_the_Nature_of_Your_Enemy_-_Weekend_-_Viewers_Choice_3

June 24, 2014 at 5:04 pm Leave a comment

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