Monthly Archives: August 2012

Marketing Christianity

   During my long commutes to and from work, I listen to a good amount of Christian broadcasts on normal radio and satellite. I find the various messages very interesting, especially the various interpretations on the same theme.

As expected, I hear marketing efforts for numerous churches and ministries. Some messages promote Christianity as the end all of all problems. Even I may be guilty of this occasionally. As pleasing as that sounds, it just isn’t as simple as the marketing would like you to think.

Joining a church will not suddenly make all your problems disappear. In the proper circumstances, it will surround you with people who care and provide emotional, spiritual, and sometimes tangible support. As it any endeavor, it takes courage to step away from the familiar, humble yourself and establishing new relationships. It takes time to establish new routines.  It takes time to gain wisdom and maturity in any new line of thought. We are naturally impatient so we may give up on good things sooner than we should. Then again, not all changes are good for us and we need to be attuned to that as well.

Another very popular marketing theme is the name-it-and-claim-it philosophy. I am not sold on this. I do not think that God is my personal butler or concierge that awaits my beck and call. I hope not. I hope that my God is much bigger than that.

As in all life, each day is filled with choices. It was every choice that we made that got us where we are. It will be choices that we make today that will determine where we are tomorrow.

I am not implying that all marketing of Christianity is bad, but as in the retail world, let the buyer beware.

Medical Adventure

While on an out-of-state vacation, I turned my ankle when I misstepped on a stair. It hurt but I thought it might get better on its own. Unfortunately, it was swollen the next morning, and even though it didn’t throb as much, I could barely stand on it. Theresa and I went to a local urgent care center called Patient First. I was very impressed with the place from the moment we walked in. There were two sign in terminals at the reception window which asked for basic information. It warned that if you needed emergency treatment, to abandon the form and interrupt the receptionist. I viewed this is an electronic triage device.

After only a few minutes, I was called in to show my ID and insurance card, relay my health complaints and sign papers etc. I was then escorted by a CNA to take my vitals. Immediately afterward, I was escorted to their on-site x-ray department. After three x-rays, the x-ray technician escorted me to an emergency-like room where I was met by a PA. The PA determined that I had indeed sprained my ankle. He prescribed an air cast, crutches, ace bandage and foot cover and medicine, all from their on-site pharmacy. If I had needed blood work, it would have been handled in their on-site lab.

As efficient as this was, it was not impersonal. The staff was very friendly. I felt that I received high quality service. Why am I writing this in my blog? Because, I have never seen a set up like this outside of a hospital. Our urgent care facilities where I live do offer friendly and quality service, but do not have on-site labs, x-ray and pharmacy facilities. Patient First seems to have found the balance between a hospital emergency room and a diagnosis clinic. I was very impressed.

Patient First is open 8am – 10pm 365 days a year, and can be utilized as a primary care provider. They operate 40 locations in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia.