I said all of that to say this: I had a conversation recently where someone used a very broad brush to paint an entire profession. In fact, I had to extricate myself from the discussion in a less than delicate fashion in order to prevent my mouth from eating my foot by saying something I would regret later.
I was told of a potential miracle cure for a very serious illness. I sceptically asked the person if it was so effective why we have never heard about it. I was told that it was an herb and doctors are only interested in pushing pills to make a profit. In fact, doctors are making so much money that all they do is prey on the illnesses of poor, unsuspecting patients and get them "hooked on pills so they have to come back once a week, or month, or 3 months."
My response to this statement was to give the example of a dear friend of mine who has been offered a top spot at a hospital, but she turned it down to go to Africa to treat children with AIDS instead. In addition, I reminded this person of the fact that Father had used a medical practitioner to help us conceive our daughter. It was quickly pointed out that the doctor made a tidy sum for his help.
Now, I realize that there are physicians who are not altruistic in their approach to practicing medicine. I also recognize that not all of them are profit-seeking despots searching out opportunities to prey on the weak. You cannot categorize such a distinctly detailed issue with the hasty generalization used by my friend. After all, does one bad apple really ruin the whole bunch?
If I buy into the fallacy that all doctors are evil, gold-digging tyrants, then I negate all of the admirable qualities held by so many of our healthcare professionals. As to their making a profit at my expense, I choose to seek their treatment and counsel; therefore, I must pay their fees. Besides, have you checked on the cost of getting a medical degree? These individuals spend tens of thousands of dollars to pay for their education. Not to mention the years studying and working for nothing before they can even begin making a living at what they do.
Again, I am not naive enough to believe that all of our doctors are noble, selfless servants. At the same time, neither are they all self-seeking, egocentric profiteers. You cannot paint so intricately with such a broad brush. After all, if my daughter decides to pursue the medical profession, I can say with assurance that she will not be doing it out of selfishness and desire for gain.
It goes back to a post I wrote several weeks ago about putting others into a box. After all, saying that I am a mother does not categorize the totality of my being. In the same way, having a PhD following your name does not completely explain who that person is as an individual. The character of the person will determine the manner in which he pursues his chosen profession. That is true of everyone from physicians and lawyers to mechanics and homemakers.
I know that I will think more carefully next time I am tempted to pull out my paintbrush of judgment. Should I judge an entire profession by the acts of a few individuals? Let us consider that though it may seem logical at the time - faster and more efficient - to use that broad brush, more likely than not, it will cause us infinitely more time and trouble to clean up the mess we make in our haste. Our disparaging remarks affect others - they are painful, often more so than a slap to the face or a kick in the shin.
I do not use this scripture often because I think it is overused in many cases. However, it is perfectly applicable to this situation. Jesus tells us in Matthew 7:1-2:
1Judge not, that you be not judged. 2For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.So, next time we decide to sling some paint with that broad brush of ours let's stop to consider this thought: Some of the paint you sling may wind up on you.