Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Medical Mission Trip

Trip Report –World Medical Mission
Soddo Christian Hospital
July 29-Aug. 13, 2013

My family and I traveled to Soddo, Ethiopia, in order for my husband, Mike, to work in the orthopedics department at Soddo Christian Hospital for a short-term medical mission trip.   The fact that this hospital was a haven of hope for the injured and sick, spoke of His great love. 

We stayed in the guesthouse which was very nice.  It was on the hospital campus so the “commute” was only a 2-minute walk to work.  Mike stayed very busy doing surgery every day as the need for orthopedic surgeons is great.  He enjoyed working at Soddo and did see a lot more trauma than he sees in his practice in the United States.  He loved all of the hospital employees including Dr. Duane Anderson who is the full-time orthopedic surgeon and learned a lot on the job. 
He was asked to speak in chapel and share some of his testimony which he did on Aug. 7th.  He also participated in weekly bible study with some of the hospital employees.

My daughter, Molly, stepson, Jonny, and I helped out Jackie Anderson at the Hope Learning Center, which is a school on the hospital campus that teaches English from the bible.  The students (ages 10-18) were a delight and we had an amazing time getting to know them.

We also volunteered to do various odd jobs and were able to organize the resident’s medical library by unboxing and arranging medical journals.  Jonny was also able to travel to the foot clinic and pray with patients while Molly and I traveled to a pre-natal clinic and assisted with blood pressure readings as well as fetal heart rate monitoring.  Both of these “daytrips” were out of our comfort zone but God gave us the confidence and equipped us to help out. 

We all thoroughly enjoyed our time in Soddo.  It is definitely a special place and the full-time missionary docs and their families were extremely kind and welcoming.  We are inquiring of the Lord as to when and if we are to return.

Friday, September 6, 2013

God Is In The Granite

Just wanted to write about a recent incident where God answered my prayer in His perfect timing.  I realize that this is a bit of a frivolous story about a first world problem but nonetheless, God is in the details and cares about anything that makes us anxious and is so willing to jump in and help.  I believe God when He says in Philippians 4:6ish, "Do not be anxious about anything.....but in prayer..., present your request to Me," no matter how "unspiritual" the request may be.  If it brings anxiety, I'm allowed to pray about it.  Super cool, eh?!

That being said, I was invited to attend the "templating" of our new countertops at a granite yard in Florida while working on a kitchen redo project.  Clearly my salesperson, Mary, had no idea the "can of worms" she was opening by inviting me.  For some reason I had been unnecessarily anxious about how this particular granite, Golden River, was going to translate once it was cut and seamed because it had an unusually large pattern and was extremely "veiny."

As she began to lay the "pattern" on the "fabric" it wasn't at all lining up in the way I had envisioned it.  She was laying the "sink and cooktop area" on the "golden" parts I loved so much which meant they would ultimately get cut out!  I tried to explain to her my exact thought/design/visual process.  I wanted more "golden" than "river" and showed her what I meant by that.  We both held the template and placed it on as she drew the outline.  I was seriously feeling overheated as we were working outside under the hot sun and there was no where to cool off.  I literally began to pray for God to strengthen me and her as I did not want us to pass out from heat exhaustion.  And then I prayed for Him to intervene and work out the template pattern for His glory.  A few minutes later, a man named Stuart came out to help.  I didn't see Mary call him out to help us but I KNEW he was sent from above as an answer to my prayer. I was extremely grateful as he took over the project and was making it work to my liking!  The thought to pray for God to give him great wisdom like Bezalel (in Exodus 36), the skilled builder of the tabernacle in the OT came to mind.  I quickly got out of the way as he began to alter the pattern placement on the granite.  While I had removed myself from the project as God clearly had everything under control,  a worker named Gino came out to eat his lunch and we began talking.  He told me that he had been on the job since 1:00 a.m. and had just found the time to take a lunch break.  It was now 2:00 p.m. in the afternoon.   He told me that he had been working 90 hour weeks as the business work load was unbelievable.  I felt terrible sorrow for him and all of the workers.  Business was great but they did not have enough employees to handle it.  It reminded me of the Israelites having to make bricks without straw!  I knew I had a new prayer assignment.  I began to pray for all of the employees to know God and love Him and find their strength in Him and then I prayed for qualified and experienced granite workers to come along and help balance the workforce and workload.

Fast forward a couple of weeks, the granite installation was complete and needless to say, it looked amazing.  I give God the glory for the beautiful job the workers did and I am grateful to Him for taking care of the details.  I'm not sure about the situation at the granite yard and how the employees are faring but I know God heard my prayers and I TRUST He is working on their behalf.  Bottom line:  I am learning to take it all to Him and trust that He cares about my concerns and is willing to reveal Himself when I humble myself and ASK for His help.  This is a good thing and HE IS AWESOME!