Students facing final exams are stressed this time of year, so no one knew how many nursing students would come to the last NCF meeting at Wichita State University. Surprisingly, 17 students and 9 teachers arrived for the final luncheon gathering.
The faculty advisors had created a lovely, inviting room with tablecloths, flowers and fancy salads for the luncheon. The theme was “Forget-Me-Not,” using the story of the paralyzed man in Mark 2 to encourage the students. The man had to ask for help and be willing to be helped. He had friends who didn’t forget him, and he was willing to do what Jesus said.
One of the faculty members brought a forget-me-not flower for each student to take home as a reminder that God longs for us to ask for his help. We need to be willing to accept God’s help as we cry out to him, “O Lord, forget me not!”
The lesson also was a reminder to engage in self-care while in nursing school. The busy students heard that it’s okay to focus on taking care of their spiritual, emotional and physical health.
About halfway through the meeting, a woman came in late but almost walked out right away. She was encouraged to stay when NCF staff Kathy Schoonover -Shoffner motioned to her. “She was older and I didn’t know if she was a student or a teacher. At the end of the meeting I introduced myself and told her we were glad she came,” Kathy said.
The woman was a first-semester student in a second career. She thought her next class was in the NCF meeting room and she rushed in, worried she was late. After listening to the program, she excitedly exclaimed, “I’ve been looking for something like this for a long time! What is this? How do I join?”
Kathy told her about NCF and how the chapter meets regularly with luncheons throughout the year. “I chuckled and told her that God had not forgotten her because he directed her to us, even when she went to the wrong room at the wrong time!” Kathy said.
Even in the final meetings of the year, NCF chapters are reaching out to welcome new members and remembering God’s healing grace to all.