Heart Trouble

I am wired today. No, I’m not wound up or hyper. I’m actually wired, connected to a heart monitor. Why? My irregular heartbeat is more irregular than usual. So for 24 hours, I am sporting a very fashionable group of wires, attached to my chest with pretty red, green, brown, and black snaps–almost Christmasy.

Prior to placement of this lovely monitor, I underwent an echocardiogram, which is an ultrasound of the heart. The technician, Tim, is a very nice young man. He did my last echocardiogram four years ago. He hasn’t changed a bit, wish I could say the same for me. Tim should play poker. He is an expert at not reacting to what he sees or hears on his equipment. I don’t know what he thought about it, but I can tell you, it didn’t sound anything like a heartbeat. No distinct thump, thump. No gentle swishing heard on baby ultrasounds. Nope. My heart sounded like an alien conversation from a Star Wars bar scene. I think it was insulting some other alien and was about to be vaporized.

After leaving the cardiology office, I needed to stop at the post office. My red snap and wire were clearly visible. I hoped the postal employee didn’t think I had a bomb strapped to my chest. I just wanted to send a Christmas present to my granddaughter and get out without a SWAT team surrounding the building. The postal employee may also play poker. If he noticed my wiring, he didn’t react to it, unless there’s an under-the-counter alert button. But I left before SWAT arrived.

Along with the monitor, I was given a chart to track the time and symptoms if I feel chest pain or shortness of breath. They will compare my chart with the monitor, which will help them diagnose what’s happening. This got me thinking (while checking my rearview mirror for the SWAT team). Wouldn’t it be great if I had another heart monitor, a monitor that would alert me when my spiritual heart is not right.

It could beep if my motives are questionable. Maybe it would give me a little jolt when my attitude is bad. When my sarcasm is not funny, but hurtful, the little line would jump. I’m pretty good at justifying my motives, attitudes, and quirky personality. (See, I just did it.) But if I got a print out of what my heart was doing during the day, would I be shocked to learn how bad off it is?

But God has already supplied a monitor to test our hearts. Hebrews 4:12 says: “For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” So it seems to me the best way to monitor my heart is to study God’s Word daily and talk to him about what changes need to be made to correct my heart problems. I am confident at least one of my hearts can be correctly diagnosed and treated. And a healthy heart is a happy heart, which I hear is good medicine, so there is hope for both hearts after all.


Author: Lisa J Radcliff

"Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together." ~ Psalm 34:3 This has been the theme verse for my life since I married Doug in 1985. I hope to write thoughts and stories that will magnify the Lord and cause others to praise him with me. As a survivor of child sexual abuse and other experiences that left me fearful and hopeless, I am so thankful that God has turned my life around. Having found freedom from my past, I have been blessed with a full, joy-filled life. I am passionate about sharing my story with others to bring them hope. My book, Hidden with Christ: Breaking Free from the Grip of Your Past, is my story of overcoming CSA. It is written differently than most books on abuse, highlighting the "heroes" God put in my life who kept me from be swallowed up by the darkness of abuse. God has used the book to help others find freedom which gives me great joy. The biggest joys of my life are being married to my husband, Doug, raising our three boys, welcoming our three daughters-in-law into the family, and being Mom-mom to our eight grandchildren! In addition, I have served in youth ministry and taught women's Bible Study for over 30 years.

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