Tuesday, June 13, 2017

It is Finished!

Repost from April 21, 2016

Somebody pretty important uttered those words after accomplishing the will of the One that sent him.  I know I have know idea what that task or moment was like, but those words sum up a bit of how I feel about our clinic project.  There really is still much more to do to wrap up the project, but the clinic days are through for this year.

It seems nearly impossible to look back over this time and think that I'll give you any real glimpse of how things went, but I'm going to try to share some thoughts.

I will say that all the way up until the day we started treating people, I was never really sure we were going to pull the whole thing off.  In fact even after that, there were moments that I thought we'd never be able to finish the week.  The Friday before clinic, I sat with my African sister on the way to one of our thousands of appointments and said, "When this is over, no person will be able to sit back and say, Look at what I accomplished.  This will very clearly be the work of the Lord God Almighty."  The week is over and I say now with even more conviction, "This clinic was a success due to none other than the God Most High!"

So as I already told you, preparation for the clinic was so much of one step forward and two steps back.  If I hadn't been as utterly convinced from each miraculous step forward that we were doing exactly what God wanted us to, I surely would have given up.

God sent us the best possible American volunteers to help us, the best possible translators to translate, the best possible national partners to partner with and the best possible national volunteers to have a work force.  We had clinic for 6 straight days, which was no small task.  Every need was met in one way or another.  We shared the gospel with thousands, we are guessing three!  Each morning we'd arrive to find hundreds of nationals waiting on us.  They were hoping for the slim chance to get their turn.  Some days, they'd wait all day, then go home to try again the next day.  Every morning we started with singing, praying and sharing from God's word.  Everybody listened, everybody heard.  At the end of the week, we think, only those that experienced the chaos could understand why I only think and don't know, we saw around 1800 people.  Over 121 glasses will be given away.  Hundreds of teeth were pulled.  Thousands of dollars of medicines were given to treat illnesses.  Best of all, we guess that 3,000 people heard the gospel clearly proclaimed and saw the love of Christ at work in the hands and feet of His followers.

Hilarious highlights from the week include me FALLING OFF THE STAGE in our very serious opening ceremony with all of the pomp and circumstance that could be mustered.  "Seriously, God, you let me fall of the stage, seriously?!!!!!"  Another of my favorites, mostly because I wasn't the object of humiliation, was one of our translators HOLDING DOWN a grown women who has birthed 2 children so that she could get her finger pricked.  Astonished at the scene, our American nurse asked, "How in the world did you have two kids."  In complete sincerity, with horror written all over her face, the lady responded, "Two people held my arms, two people held my feet and somebody held my body to keep me still."

We had so many moments of pure joy, moments of sheer and complete frustration, fear, doubt and complete incompetence peppered my days.  Precious volunteers offered food when I was famished, a seat to sit down when I was exhausted, called out my beloved nickname as they saw me march by to handle the current disaster and tirelessly continued what we started.

Thanks for praying, giving, coming.  The ending of so many stories is yet to be written.

With love,

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