Preacher Fred Craddock told this story years ago. It still encourages me and I hope it will make you smile.
I remember in an airport in Kansas City years ago, waiting for a plane, I fell into conversation with a fellow from the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands. He was in this country completing a study on the influence of the conversation between doctors and nurses with the patient in surgery who is under anesthesia.
His view was, in fact, that he had established it beyond all doubt. He found that if the doctors and nurses were negative and gripey and grumpy, then the patient in post-operative conditions was depressed and pessimistic. If the doctors and nurses were upbeat, happy, merry, and cheerful, then the patient in post-operative care was euphoric and optimistic and proceeded to recover quickly.
The time came when I had to catch my plane. I thanked him for the conversation, and he said, “Why, are you a doctor?”
I said, “Oh, no, I’m a preacher.”
“But if it’ll work in surgery, it’ll work in sanctuary.”
So when I go somewhere to speak, and people are asleep, it doesn’t bother me anymore, because I know that several days later they may get a little Christian twitch. They won’t know what caused it, but I’ll know.