Wednesday Wisdom: Jesus and Jellyfish
If you‚Äôre a fan of the 90‚Äôs sitcom Friends you may recall ‚ÄúThe One with the Jellyfish‚Äù (Season 4: Episode 1). The episode includes Monica getting stung by a jellyfish at the beach and the ensuing debate of how they were going to relieve the pain. Apparently, as Joey would explain from what he had seen on the Discovery Channel, ‚Äúpeeing‚Äù on the area helps prevent the stinging sensation. I know - if you haven‚Äôt heard pouring urine on the skin where the jellyfish tentacle touched, stay tuned. Soooooooooo, one school of thought says that when you get stung by a jellyfish, an immediate response to limit the burning is to urinate on the sting (tuck that tidbit of non-medical supported advice away for later). This past Saturday was a perfect day at the beach, until the tide came in. As we began to pack up the Jeep, we heard our daughter belt out the most outrageous scream. She was standing in a tide pool with tears streaming down her face. As we investigated her obvious discomfort, we realized she was the victim of a jellyfish encounter. There was no consoling her, so her mom decided to do what was best - pee in a bucket. We were all confident, after a concise debate, this was the best option we had. Well, despite her ‚Äúmom-of-the-year‚Äù award for peeing on demand, the urine had zero affect on the sting. Through the screaming and hyperventilating, we managed to put enough ice on it to numb the pain until we made it home. And when we did, Addi was still in a state of shock and reluctant to allow us to help. My wife‚Äôs quick search identified that we shouldn‚Äôt have used urine, and we shouldn‚Äôt have used ice. According to The Mayo Clinic, soak the skin in hot water. Use water that's 110 to 113 F (43 to 45 C). If a thermometer isn't available, test the water on an uninjured person's hand or elbow ‚Äî it should feel hot, not scalding. Keep the affected skin immersed or in a hot shower for 20 to 45 minutes. In the interim, I tried everything (chocolate, cookies, bacon), but Addi would not respond. I‚Äôll never forget seeing her face filled with tears, so adamant about not wanting to listen to me, her father. I had her best interest in mind but she couldn‚Äôt get past the pain she was experiencing. Finally, I decided to lead by example. I got down on my knees and placed my forearm in the warm bath water. I invited her to join me, to calm down, and be still. Soon enough, she did, and the pain began to subside, along with her tears. I noticed she was feeling better and was more receptive to what I had to say. We talked through the next steps and took care of the situation. I reflected that evening, how often our heavenly Father prompts us to calm down, be still, to pause from the pains afflicting us, and ‚Äúsoak for 20-45 minutes‚Äù. He‚Äôs the one who has the power to calm the seas, move mountains, bring death to life - and also take care of the jellyfish. We don‚Äôt always understand when we‚Äôre caught in a situation, but it all makes sense to God. We have to remember, in every situation, to listen to him and trust (Proverbs 3:5-6) what he has to say. Maybe now is a good time for you to pause for a few minutes and soak, or maybe you simply need a good laugh. If the latter applies to you, enjoy Monica getting stung by a jellyfish.