Monday, April 25, 2011

Wednesday April 13, 2011

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Tonight we sang “He is mighty to save”, and this morning we began with the verse from Matthew – ‘my yoke is easy and my burden is light”. And both the beginning and end of this day, anchored in God and God’s strength and promises, fit our experiences perfectly.

It was a first clinic for all of us this trip, and a first clinic in SA for a number of our team. So there was some anxiousness about how things would go. But moment by moment, patient by patient, one procedure after another, there was a wonderful calm and confidence that grew among us and enabled us to both work well together and concentrate not so much on what we were doing but on the people with whom we were working and for whose sake we have come.

Simply put, it was as smooth and incident free a day as could be hoped and prayed for, and we thank you for adding your prayers to ours.

After a busy and full day yesterday of pill counting and medicine sorting, with the children joyously watched over by young people from the Church, and an evening of getting lunches ready for all of us and all the staff, we hit the beds for a short night.

Up very early and on our way shortly after 6:30 to Gubhatuka we arrived before 7:30 to find 150 people already waiting in line to see the Winter Doctors, and to find the ‘clinic’ set up for us by the young people directed by Mercy Mafu.

After introducing ourselves to the waiting people, and a brief affirming and challenging message about our faith by a young leader of ACM - Sabelo – the clinic began smoothly and ran that way all day.

Our docs, key to all we do, carefully processed patients who were first registered by our Zulu helpers, then screened by Kristie, Sarah R. and Barbara, who measured vital signs, and then ushered to one of the doctor stations by Heather.

Once seen by one of the Docs (how grateful our veteran doctors are – Sharon, Andy and Cathy - to have additional help from Amy and Bruce) our patients then either moved to be seen for eye glasses by Pastor Robertson and his great Zulu helpers, and or moved to the pharmacy to receive the meds prescribed by the docs from the pharmacy staff of Sarah N., Megan, Anna, and others who pitched in as time allowed. Better than Rite Aid or Costco for sure – very personal service.

A surprise this year and today was the number of patients who were referred by the docs to our Dentist, Tinashe. Thought to be mostly an observer today, our dentist did numerous treatments and even one extraction with her portable dental equipment. Dental hygiene surely needs encouragement, and rural dentistry may be that encouragement, though patients expressed only gratitude.

After all treatments and medication were completed each patient was invited to join the prayer circle where their concerns and needs and joys were prayed for by the Zulu prayer team members and members for our staff from time to time.

In the rush of all we were doing it was a delight to see our youngest Team members, Josiah and Ezra, taking turns zonking out in the pack-and-play in between rigorous play periods with Tony and Abigail, supervised by the great teen sitters.

All things did truly work together for good. We saw over 150 patients including a Chief of the Zulu and two of his wives. New glasses for them all!

Done by four, packed up and home just before dark, we gathered with the members of the Church in Kwamashesha for the Wednesday night Bible Study. Rev. Rob led a teaching and sharing about how God’s Word is addressed to us for our own good especially in times of trouble, anxiety, or stress. God is great and God is Good – all the time.

Tonight was a great dinner of Sharon’s taco soup (prepared largely by Anna), devotions led by Andy on guitar, and team member Kristie who shared her Scripture verse and her life token. Barbara continues to clean in the kitchen, tireless alongside Cathy and Kristie. The entire team lends a hand when needed.

A cloudy humid night – no brilliant southern sky – but we know the Southern Cross is there – as is the guiding redeeming light of love from the cross of our Savior.

We learned again today to trust in God through Jesus Christ, by whom, and through whom with whom we can do all things.

Rev Rob

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