Retired cardiologist describes spiritual journey

Written by: Katelyn Freil

When Dr. Terry A. Gordon found out that his son had been in a car accident that left him paralyzed, he immediately got on a plane to Colorado to see him. While on the plane, he found himself wondering whether he could handle the situation, when he heard encouraging words from God.

“Adversity is a gift from the divine,” Gordon said.

That is just one of the many spiritual messages from Gordon’s Forum Series lecture at E.J. Thomas Hall Tuesday night.

Gordon, a retired cardiologist, studied mainstream medicine for 20 years. According to his website, he was named National Physician of the Year in 2002 by the American Heart Association because of his efforts to raise funds to place automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in Summit County schools.

Gordon said that as a medical professional, he could only believe something if it could be proven, and even then he could be skeptical.

His eyes were opened when a patient named Art came into his office. This man said that Gordon needed to slow down.

“When the student is ready, the teacher will appear,” Art said.

That day, Art had been experiencing chest pain. Gordon was ready to perform a procedure to check for blockages when an emergency came up and he had to leave. When it came time to help him, Art said he knew what Gordon would find.

“I studied medicine, and I never could tell what I would find,” Gordon said.

Art said Gordon would find two blockages and after a thorough search, Gordon indeed found them. After that, Gordon listened to Art’s story, and his eyes were opened to a more spiritual approach.

During his lecture, Gordon revealed other situations that he described as slaps to his face — situations that made him realize the importance of every event in life.

Gordon said that when his son was in the accident and he heard the message from God, he wondered whether there is such a thing as a negative experience.

“A calamity is only a tragedy if we decide to make it so,” Gordon said. “The real tragedy is when something like this happens and we don’t learn from it.”

As an experiment, he had the audience members put their hands in front of their faces, with four fingers sticking up. He told them to focus on the fingers, which stood for the pain and anguish in a person’s life, and then to focus on him.

“It’s all in changing your perspective,” he said.

In closing, he left the audience with these inspirational words:

“Even God doesn’t create a storm that lasts forever.”