Overview

The Agape Nursing Model was created to support the calling of the kingdom (Christ-centered) nurse, delivering focused, dynamic care inspired by the qualities of Christ and influenced by the presence of the Holy Spirit.


Being divinely aware, inclusive and dedicated to the respect of all people, the calling and practice of the kingdom nurse benefits from organization and focus. The peer-reviewed Agape Nursing Model not only defines specific guidelines, but celebrates its attriutes by encouraging Christ-like qualities to exemplify excellence in the delivery of professional standards of nursing care.


Agape, the kind of love that Christ modeled for us.  Selfless, charitable, compassionate and genuine. 

The genesis: It starts with Kingdom Nursing

The Agape Nursing Model was created to support the calling of the kingdom (Christ-centered) nurse, delivering focused, dynamic care inspired by the qualities of Christ and influenced by the presence of the Holy Spirit.


Being divinely aware, inclusive and dedicated to the respect of all people, the calling and practice of the kingdom nurse benefits from organization and focus. The peer-reviewed Agape Nursing Model not only defines specific guidelines, but celebrates its attributes by encouraging Christ-like qualities to exemplify excellence in the delivery of professional standards of nursing care.


Agape, the kind of love that Christ modeled for us.  Selfless, charitable, compassionate and genuine. 

The Agape Nursing Model: Application of Kingdom Nursing

Faith based nursing is a calling.  There is a need for a nursing model based on the agape love and quality characteristics of Christ upon which kingdom nurses may align their nursing practice.  Useful not only in nursing but also in life, the ultimate goal of such a model allows the Spirit of God to dominate all situations and reflect the heart and character of Christ.  


The Agape Model shapes the Kingdom Nurse toward excellence as an Ambassador of Christ.

Abstract

"Nine out of 10 American adults believe Jesus was a real person, and almost two-thirds have made a commitment to Jesus Christ. Research further supports that spiritual beliefs and religious practices influence overall health and well-being. Christian nurses need a practice model that helps them serve as kingdom nurses. This article introduces the Agape Model, based on the agape love and characteristics of Christ, upon which nurses dedicated to the Christian faith may align their practice to provide Christ-centered care."

Eckerd, N., (2017). A Nursing Practice Model Based on Christ: The Agape Model, Journal of Chrisitan Nursing, Vol 34, Number 3, Publish Ahead of Print: DOI:0000000000000417.

Positional Statements

Statements of position are provided to identify the parameters of the Agape Nursing Model.  They define the basics of our faith, principles of our philosophy, overview of our culture and specific intent of the Agape Nursing Model. 

Statement of Faith

God exists in three persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  God created the heavens and earth and all things exist by and through Him.  The Bible is the inerrant, authoritative word of God and together with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, guides all personal and professional conduct and care provided by the kingdom nurse.  As an offering to God, the kingdom nurse strives for a life reflective of the dedication to a calling from God and belief in the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, offering salvation and eternal life to all who seek Him.

Statement of Ethos

The ethos of the Agape Model is dedicated to a lifestyle reflecting the character of Christ in both professional and personal life.  The reflection is visualized through care incorporating the Fruit of the Spirit and is achieved through committed growth both professionally and spiritually, through faith, prayer, the use of spiritual gifts and the leading of the Holy Spirit.  The kingdom nurse is respectful of differences in culture and worldview and offers the highest level of excellence in all acts, attitudes, behaviors, thoughts and deeds.  This commitment to excellence is viewed as worship and an offering to God.

Statement of Nursing Metaparadigm

Person, environment, health and nursing are significant concepts which serve to help define the nursing practice.  The paradigm view, created intentionally broad, shows inclusivity on all levels.  

By providing care focused on the love of Christ, the kingdom nurse views the nursing practice as follows:


Person:  The recipient of Christ-centered care, inclusive of the patient, patient's family, peers and those with whom the nurse comes in contact, both professionally and personally.


Environment:  The spiritual and physical environment where the nurse emulates the agape love of Christ.


Health. The connection to the spiritual, emotional, relational and physical wellbeing of the recipient of Christ-centered care.


Nursing:  Provider of care to all mankind revealing the presence and heart of Christ.

Statement of Tenets

Download the Agape Model  below for spiritual references relating to specific tenets: Bible, Calling, Death, Eternal Life, Fruit of the Spirit, Intercession, Prayer, Resurrection, Salvation, Shalom, Sin, Spiritual Gifts and Trinity.

Agape Nursing Model Constructs

"For the past 20+ years, I have been nursing with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, self-control and faithfulness.  But there was a void.  I was not guided by the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit was the catalyst that took me from a conventional nurse to a "kingdom nurse".  I am honored to be a kingdom nurse, understanding God's calling and having the Holy Spirit lead my life and nursing practice surpasses more than I ever imagined."

-Jennifer Scott, RN


Nurse continues spiritual and professional growth. Through thoughtful, committed study, the kingdom nurse turns from earthly to Christ-like behavior as an act of worship and the influence of the Holy Spirit.

"Being a kingdom nurse allows me to be an extension of the hands of Christ.  The love and care that I have for all my patients is a reflection of the love that Christ has for me." -Edna Vang, BSN, RN


Nurse utilizes prayer and spiritual gifts in response to the Holy Spirit. At this point, the kingdom nurse is a conduit between the Holy Spirit and the recipient of care.  This is truly holy ground.

"As a young nurse, I loved Jesus, but only thought I loved people.  Insecure about what my faith could bring to the table and how it would be received, I kept those things separate.  I had a patient one day, with all the medicine and technology available to her, ask me to pray with her.  This truly changed my life and the way I saw people, patients, family and friends.  The love I have in my heart for my "people" coupled with the power in Christ Jesus was and is the Power House."  

-Lacey Miller, RN


Nurse reflects Fruit of the Spirit at the point of care. The immediate benefit to the nursing profession is a biblically defined view of compassionate care such as that demonstrated by Jesus Christ.

Assumptions

The kingdom nurse has accepted and is a committed follower of Jesus Christ as personal Savior and continues growth both professionally and spiritually to maintain expert nursing excellence and growth in faith.      

  

In addition to relying on professional instinct, knowledge and training, the kingdom nurse, through faith, relies upon the supernatural power of prayer, the prompting of the Holy Spirit and the use of spirtual gifts to best discern the needs of the patient.       


As an act of worship, the kingdom nurse offers the Fruit of the Spirit at the point of care.   The Fruit of the Spirit includes love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control.       

The love of Christ transcends all denominations and cultures and meets the patient at their point of need.


Guidelines

The Agape Model does not include proselytization as a concept, 

but focuses only on the outward expression of Christ-like qualities 

held by all believers.     


Permission should be granted by the patient prior to prayer.    

 

Institutional policies may prohibit prayer whether solicited or unsoliited, and most often refer to verbally engaging the patient in prayer.  The kingdom nurse must be respectful of those policies.  That being said, no policy may ever refrain the kingdom nurse from silent intercessory prayers on behalf of others.

Benefit to Nursing

The Agape Model benefits all aspects of patient care as it deals with the core character of the nurse.  


The freshness of approach and delivery will serve to further elevate the nursing profession as a gold standard of care, setting an example of excellence.  


While the primary goal of the Agape Model is for the nurse to emulate the character of Christ, the secondary goal will ultimately result in elevated patient satisfaction and outcomes.


Past and Future Applications

The Agape Model integrates well into nursing models as the quality of care is revealed by the kingdom nurse's character in the delivery of acts, attitudes, behaviors, thoughts and deeds.  By recognizing the spiritual dimension as holy ground, the nursing profession is elevated to provide both care and compassion for those they serve.            


Impact of supernatural influences and spiritual gifts is recommended as it is the framework upon which the Agape Model is built.  Research would be beneficial regarding recognition of the character qualities of the Fruit of the Spirit resulting from the Agape Model in terms of patient satisfaction and outcomes.

Downloads

Agape Nursing Model Word Document (pdf)

Download

View The Agape Model via the Journal of Christian Nursing

Testimonials

Gwen Schnorrenberg, Cancer Survivor

"I am a breast cancer survivor. The care I received in a secular hospital was so wonderful because of nurses who weren't just doing their jobs, but who were also followers of Christ.  Their care and compassion was as healing, if not more so, than the cancer drugs they were in charge of administering to me.  I would always tell them they were my angels.  I thank God for Christian nurses who give their lives to serve the needs of others."

Gabe Bahlhorn, www.1nation1day.com

"Medical missions is one of the most powerful tools on the mission field.  By presenting the life transforming message of Jesus with a physical touch that meets a need, you are able to see a profound harvest.  That's what I love about Kingdom Nursing."

Juli Merciez, www.cottageforlife.com

"In serving pregnant women who are in need throughout our local and state communities, the Agape Nursing Model presents the very character of Christ through us.  Kingdom Nursing elevates our areas of influence and impact in situations of dire personal need, health risks and social inequity.  We were able to base our ministry model on a solid structure to develop a fresh approach to serving others.  It allows us to recognize that we are to be flexible, humble and non-judgmental as we impact generations to come."

Gregg Hill, D.O., FACC

"Being a physician for over 20 years, I have had the privilege to work with some very talented, compassionate and knowledgeable nurses.  Comrades in arms as health professionals, we have confronted the critically ill, consoled the broken spirit and rejoiced with the patients who have overcome some impossible odds.  It is from those experiences where I have learned to appreciate the essence of nursing. Despite those great attributes, I have recently gained a deeper appreciation for a different style of nusing.  Having the opportunity to work with kingdom nurses on a recent medical mission trip, I have been astonished at the great compassion, devotion and leadership that I have rarely seen.  The dedication and commitment that prevailed against monuental tasks to care for the needy with these Christ filled nurses was nothing less than miraculous.  Their devotion to serve Christ had greatly impacted their patient, lifted our mission team and all those they touched. The kingdom nurse is truly a blessing for someone who has been blessed."

Todd Craig, Pastor

"In almost any situation where there is a physical need, there is also an emotional and spiritual need that goes with it.  Nurses are at their best when they are able to respond to all three.  While physical care will often take the priority, it is a true gift when a nurse is able to identify and be sensitive to the emotional and spiritual needs of the patient.  The Agape Nursing Model prepares for this kind of interaction through the practice of nursing and a unique focus on the Christian presence of the nurse.  The transactional practice of nursing is certainly beneficial, but when a nurse is able to be fully present and see patients through the eyes of Jesus and treat them with the compassion of Jesus, these moments can be truly transformational." 

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