You're Paying Me When You Don't Know (Romans 14:23)

During my career, I have met many CEOs of hospitals, laboratories, and medical clinics. As a dermatopathologist, I bring a relatively unique expertise to a medical center. Most welcome the opportunity to work with me and it is usually a mutually beneficial arrangement. One CEO of a major reference laboratory took a more dismissive stance toward me. When I introduced myself and informed him of my expertise, he sniffed, “Dermatopathology, huh? A dermatologist I know told me that 95% of all diagnoses can be summed up with 4 diseases. Any pathologist can make these diagnoses!”

I thought he was just chiding me but as I waited for a smile that never came, I realized I needed to defend myself. “Well, that may be an overstatement, but yes, many diagnoses in dermatopathology and in medicine fall into a few common diseases. But you don’t need me for the 95% of diagnoses that any pathologist can make. You’re paying me when you don’t know. You need me for the 5% of diagnoses that will be missed by an average pathologist. You need me for the 5% of diagnoses that will lead to a very bad outcome for the patients and all those caring for them because it was misdiagnosed.”

I don’t usually fire back like that but I was very upset by his audacity and arrogance. He wasn’t a physician, speaking from personal experience, and he was simply quoting another equally misinformed colleague. He was definitely taken aback by my reply and actually apologized. He realized he was taking our relationship for granted.

My annoyance was tempered by my own realization that I, too, take my relationship with God for granted. Too often, I think I only need God when things go wrong. The other 95% of the time, I can handle it on my own. But it is not just for the 5% of problems that seem insurmountable that I need God, it should be for 100% of life. Any activity that excludes God from my life is sin.

...for whatever is not from faith is sin.
Romans 14:23 (ESV)

Everything I do must be held up to the light of God’s Word. Every decision must first be placed before God to allow Him to direct my thoughts and actions according to His will. It is not just 5% of the time, but 100% of my entire life.


Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.