During the past 15 years or so, some developing thinking in the health-care industry has changed the usual approach to caring for others. One idea that has emerged is to recognize the importance of respecting individuals and their choices. This particular change has resulted in new terminology emphasizing the patient’s role at the center of care decisions, and “patient-centered care” and “person-centered care” have become common. There is no doubt that this approach is a step of progress in how individuals are treated, and we can recognize it as a foundational expression of respect in many cultures and religions. I’m aware of at least one prominent medical care organization that includes Christ Jesus’ Golden Rule as a guiding principle of its work.
As a Christian Science nurse helping individuals who are relying on God for healing, I’ve thought a lot about the approach one should take. It is so clear that our own study and demonstration of Christian Science is essential in order to help others. Every healing in our own experience as a result of acknowledging and understanding God’s omnipotence enables us to confidently assure others that they can be healed, too. Putting God at the center and seeing man as His reflection and the recipient of His tender, transforming love is a radical shift in thought, which changes our approach from patient- or person-centered care to God-centered care.
With this understanding of God at the center, applying the Golden Rule takes on new meaning. Treating someone else the way we would want to be treated means understanding that both the caregiver and the patient have all the good God bestows on His children, right now and always!