Tonight we want everyone at home to know one thing for certain: no matter how hard we might try to come down here to be a blessing to the people here, we always end up being the ones that are more blessed! I’ve always loved the (true) saying, “you can’t out-give God”. And even when we have given 13 and ½ hours at the hospital today between four major surgical cases and 15 more clinic patients, the saying holds true.
Today we were blessed by the smiles and tears of relief and gratitude of several family members when we were able to tell them that their loved one’s surgery went smoothly and they would be out of the OR in a few minutes.
Today we were blessed by a hospital staff that worked right alongside us without (much) grumbling or complaining, despite the fact that they work three or four times as hard during the weeks we are here than when we are not, and they don’t get paid extra.
Today we were blessed by a patient that brought us apples as a gift—out of gratitude for us “taking care of her so well”—Friends, I am not exaggerating when I say we did almost nothing for this patient, and she waited from probably around 7:30 am until 4:15 pm before we could even see her!!!!! We explained that a problem she thought she was having was actually normal and gave her a small tube of cream for some itching. I truly hope and pray that what she felt, though, was God’s love working through us to bless her. (God knows we were tired enough to have very little left of ourselves to give her at that point!)
Today we were blessed—as we always are!—by the hot lunch that the hospital cook provides us. She is simply amazing, and it’s embarrassing how well we eat here while on a “mission” trip!
And today we were blessed, most of all, by each other’s company and laughs and silliness and energy keeping each other going. Do you know I have NEVER had any personality issues with any small team I have brought down here, despite 10 years of travel with folks that often didn’t know each other, sometimes didn’t even know ME, and have always stayed in quite tight quarters? Never. That’s nothing short of divine intervention, friends, and I am so grateful for it!
We do need to ask for some extra special prayers, though, for our new friend Ofelia. We diagnosed her with a bad cervical cancer tumor today (biopsy results pending but it was pretty obvious). It is not operable, and her only treatment option is to get very expensive radiation therapy down in Guatemala City several hours from here. She is basically the single mother of a nine year-old little girl, as her husband left for The States about six years ago and rarely sends money anymore (he has a new family there now). Her little girl’s name is Yesica.
I lost my mother when I was nine. That’s no way to grow up. Please pray for divine intervention as well as for the father to step up and pitch in! I’m really worried about how advanced her tumor is.
I’ll really try to post some pictures so as not to end on a low note here, but no promises—internet is spotty 😉
God bless you all, and good night!