Monday, March 7, 2016

The Battle Belongs to the Lord

  Spring rush is on! It seems that here in Alegue the start of the rainy season in early March always coincides with an increase in clinic traffic. Part of that is due to most of the local farmers having already planted their fields which gives everybody more spare time to do things like go to the hospital or assist family members in getting there. I'll try to highlight a few of the things that have been happening around here in the last week or so.
  Since the first of the year we've been doing some renovation on the little area uphill from the clinic to the fence.  Thanks to several of our local "bosses", Lucien and Auguste, the area that had always been an eyesore is now paved with rough yet tidy stones that help keep the mud at bay as well as discourage the ever present litter. I put a new clothesline up as well to the great delight of the cleaning ladies at clinic who until then had been patiently improvising with a few short ropes hung between the trees.
  Another project that has been in the development stage for quite a long time is renovating the old stone two room outbuilding above the clinic into a medical laboratory. That project so far has involved a new metal roof, reinforcement of some of the old framing, and running electricity to the building. It seems that we are legally required to have a lab to be able to finalize our clinic's registration with the Haitian Government and besides that, with the long distance we have to send our patients for blood work it will be a dramatic boon to our level of care if we can do some more basic tests here ourselves.
  Last Thursday we experienced one of the tougher things that medical faculty have to deal with. A young girl with a very swollen liver and abdomen was carried in in severe respiratory distress. A very sweet and friendly little thing, when we'd ask her how she was doing, she would barely gasp out between breaths, " Pa pi mal!" ( not to bad). However, she was not doing well at all but we elected to keep her at the clinic on oxygen and try to stabilize her and perhaps transport out to another hospital in the morning for a higher level of care. By 22:00 it was obvious that she would have a hard time making it through the night so we decided to transfer out to the Cuban hospital in Grand Goâve. Alyssa and Ellamae went along for patient care and we headed off down the rutted trail in the landcruiser. Halfway out to town our little patient´s struggling breaths finally ceased. Her heart had stopped. As I turned the rig around with a heavy heart and started back up the trail towards home the words of that song, ¨Oh Lord Jesus how long?¨ kept going through my mind. ¨How long till death will finally be vanquished once and for all? Why does life seem so unjust and cruel at times? Only God knows the answers to these questions and I am slowly learning to take these things and leave them at his feet and not spend to much energy trying to sort it all out. Dealing with these types of situations, especially when we are at our wit´s end to know what the next step is, forces us to lean on Jesus. He´s promised to take our cares and carry them for us. Sometimes I wonder why I´m so slow to talk to him about stuff. He´s always been there when the going gets rough. He knows his plan. The fight is His. The winner of this war has already been decided.
   Pray for the team here. Pray that we´d have an extra dose of courage and wisdom for the difficult times. Pray that we would through our love and service keep expanding the borders of the Kingdom of God.


Paiges Pages said...

I will most definitely pray for all of you, and for all of Haiti too!
This is such an encouraging post. It is good you are finally getting some rain! Praise the Lord!
God is good all the time, and all the time, God is good!!

Kindra said...

Tears, hugs, and love to you all; I well know the pain of losing a patient, and the young ones are always the hardest. Keep fighting the fight, and know that you are never far from my mind, and ALWAYS in my prayers...

Gwen said...

Jesus weeps with you and so do I. The clinic improvements sound great. God bless the whole bunch of you!

Anonymous said...

Keep looking to God! He IS always there. Keep trusting Him.

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength: -Isaiah 26:3-4

And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will deliver you. -Isaiah 46:4

Mis Rhoda said... the God Who alone understands it all. I love you!

Ann Wotring said...

It's a fallen world where bad things happen and what a wonderful knowledge that at the end of it all, God is standing at the gates with his arms wide open for all the little lambs like her. May God bless you richly for your work! Praying for you all tonight. :)

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