Joan Porter Interview

  • March 20, 2012
  • #7797

Joni interviews Joan about how she uses her career as a nurse to encourage others.

JONI: Hi friends, this is Joni Eareckson Tada, and welcome to Joni and Friends. I’ve got a good friend here with me today, Joan Porter, who is a nurse par excel lance, huh Joan? You really are. 

JOAN: I loved every minute of it.

JONI: Well, I loved the nurses that God brought into my life. Joan, I was in a hospital for almost two years and met a lot of nurses in that time and they had a big impact on my life. It was just those who treated me like a person – not a cripple, not an invalid, but as a person. Wouldn’t you agree that that makes a big difference?

JOAN: I would agree. What an opportunity. You know I have often thought how exciting and how wonderful it was that I was able to be at the bedside and to love these people, to hug them, to listen to them, to let them know that they are important and had the joy of being in it over 35 years. I am telling you it was unbelievable. Every day I couldn’t wait to get to work.

JONI: Now that’s fascinating. Here you are a nurse for 35 years and what you just described seems so unusual --- to hug them, to be at the bedside, to love them. Sometimes people look at nursing now days and it’s the temperature chart, the respiration chart, lots of paper work to fill out, lots of sitting at the desk and pushing the pens and pencils. What do you think makes nursing unique? And what makes a nurse a good nurse?

JOAN: Well, a good nurse has got to really love people. I mean, that’s the basic thing. The kind of business I was in, they lost their teeth all the time, they couldn’t find their room, many of them just couldn’t hear and a lot of the things we thought were confusion was just the regular things. But you know, they are regular people who need to be loved and who need to be encouraged. And the family at many bedsides when this person is taken home and I had the joy of praying with the family and it was just a wonderful ride.

JONI: Now, Joan, you are a Christian, a strong believer in the Lord Jesus. How were you able to convey the love of Christ to the patients in your charge those many years?

JOAN: Many ways. We had available to everyone Bibles. We had a tract ministry in the entry of all of the doors that any of the families and visitors to avail themselves to. When asked, we prayed, we gave what the Lord meant to me personally.

JONI: Now that would be okay if the patient asked you to pray, you were free then to do so.

JOAN: Oh, I felt free to do it. I pushed the limit because I felt that this was not only caring for their body. We did a very unusual thing, we had ventilator patients; we had patients that had Alzheimer; we had many terminal cancer victims, and so we saw the whole spectrum and I felt that I was at the bedside many times – that God really allowed me to be there – to just be one of the last persons to say God loves you, you’ve got to realize there is something beyond death. It’s not over when it’s over.

JONI: You know, I think about that and I can hear the words of the Lord Jesus “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” You had a chance to be that individual representing the Lord Jesus by the bedside: I will never leave you, I will not forsake you. I’ll be here with you as you pass out of this life and enter a different life. Thank you for being so committed to the Lord, and committed to the people in your charge.

JOAN: Amen!

Previously aired as: Program #6749 on 3/13/08

© Joni and Friends

Have You Been Encouraged?

  • Your email address will not be published with your comment or be displayed anywhere on our website.
  • We do not rent or sell your personal information to other companies or individuals.
  • For more information please see our privacy policy.