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Saturday, November 21, 2009

So much to be Thankful for....

Happy Thanksgiving! I know it is not exactly thanksgiving yet but my team and I
celebrated thanksgiving yesterday. My first thanksgiving on a beach! Pretty
amazing. The base is full of families and singles from Tanzania. We introduced
them to a little bit of American history yesterday by including them in all our
thanksgiving activities. A nice breakfast, followed by a day at the beach, then a
dinner with dessert! It was a treat for us to have dessert and for all of them to be
able to go to the beach! It was great fun to watch them play, swim, and see there
kids just soak up every minute of play time while we were there. I will try to get
some pictures up soon!

These weeks here seem to be flying by. We are starting on the down hill slope of
our time here. Only seven weeks left. The news this week is extra exciting. There
are many staff at the hospital that have been asking us several questions about
being different, what is different about you they ask. They hear us praying, they
know we believe in Jesus, and they even are starting to let us pray for them!
There is one doctor in particular who has shown extra interest and been asking
extra questions over these past few weeks. This past week one of our teams had
the privilege of being at lunch with him the day he decided to become born again.
This was awesome! Places are changed by one individual. This doctor was
letting God open up His heart and wants to change. He wants and now has
Jesus! We are so excited to be able to continue to disciple him in these next
weeks of being at the hospital and are so eager to see the ripple effect of God
working in this doctors life.

It is hard to top the first testimony of this week but I did experience a view of
Jesus that was beautiful. There are about 30-40, sometimes more, women that
need to have full assessments done every morning in the ward I was working in
this week. This is the antenatal ward, the women are in latent phase of labor
waiting to go into active phase to be moved over to the labor ward. With only two
doctors you can imagine how long these checks take. I was assisting a doctor on
thursday morning with the women’s checks and we were about half way through
the women. It is a series of different checks, one of which is listening to and
counting the fetal heart tones. Most of the time we as students are asked to listen
to the heart of the baby with a pinard. It is a cone shaped piece of equipment that
works like a stethoscope. On this one particular mamma, I could not hear the
heart sounds. Not an uncommon occurrence because the pinard is not as easy
to use or accurate for all mammas. So I reached over to get the doppler machine
to listen to the heart sounds. As I put the machine on the women’s belly, I
immediately found the heart tones. I looked down at my watch to start my
counting when I caught a glimpse of the mamma out of the conner of my eye,
she was crying. There was this short moment when the business, the room, it
was all quiet. This women, possible for the first time was hearing her babies heart
beating. She was experiencing this life that had been growing inside of her. It
was this beautiful moment of love. Later that day as I continued to remember this
mamma and her baby I couldn’t get over the love that was flowing out of her the
moment she knew she could hear the life that was inside of her. It was this
instant picture for me of Jesus. These women endure and go through a lot of
harsh treatment and situations to have these babies. They suffer and have
severe pain. They watch as other women around them go through so many
difficult situations not knowing what is going to happen to them and there baby.
This mamma was fighting for this life. She was enduring and suffering just to hear
that little heart beat. To know that life was coming, to hear that heart beat gave
her hope and a drive to push through to delivery. It was just such a clear picture
of Jesus. He endured, He suffers, He watches in horror as we do things to each
other that are deadly, scary, and painful. He waits for those little moments where
He can hear our heart beat. He is waiting to hear the little heart beats of His
children. The heart beat of one of them walking in a talent that He gave them, or
one of them receiving healing, or one of them coming into His kingdom, like are
doctor friend. We can know that life is coming. Life will be brought forth from
Jesus. He is determined to see our life brought forth into restoration and
completeness. So we may be dragged through, or drag ourselves through, many
unnecessary painful experiences, worry, and fear, but in the end He is
persevering, He is life, and He is determined in His love for us.

You are blessed to be a blessing.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Exciting News.....

These blog posts are getting few and far between. I wish I could write everyday as much as God is doing, I am seeing, and learning. My team and I am working hard in the hospital and at the clinic every week.

We are getting to know the staff better and really having such opportunity to be open with them about what we believe and able to share Jesus with them through action and words. This is amazing! To be open to freely speak about why we are loving the mamma’s, why we have a patience and peace, why we care about the little details that need to be taken care of, why we are concerned with the conditions of the staff being overworked. We love them because Jesus loves us.

There is such big news to write about I don’t know where to begin. Well I will start with my first delivery! We are moving into the part of our course where we are beginning to conduct deliveries with our instructors hands over ours. So we are not completely alone yet but putting what we have learned into practice. My first delivery didn’t look exactly like that. Here is a little bit of a set up. The labor ward is not a quiet, calm place to say the least. There is a room full of mamma’s that are waiting because they are not fully dilated yet then there is another room with delivery beds where the mammas are ready and delivering. My staff, Melisa, was in conducting a delivery of her own when a mamma on the other side of the ward was beginning to scream. Her baby was coming. The nurses were not assisting and I walked by to see what was happening. Before you know it I am putting on sterile gloves welcoming a little one into this world. It was amazing. The baby was beautiful, healthy, and so was the mamma. It was/is such a blessing to be apart of this process and even when walking up in the last minutes of this woman’s delivery having her trust me, seeing her know that I was so concerned and caring about the health of her and her baby. Even without words, this was communicated. That is only possible because Jesus is loving me to love her. He is in me, using me in that place, to shine into that women’s life. It is incredible.

Here is a little bit of a set up for the next story. First I want to share about the power of prayer and proclaiming things that God leads you to pray over people. Before we left on this outreach, one of the leaders of our base Peter Brownhill, was praying for us. He prayed that our words would not be small, to not be anxious about our words, and that we would come before people of power or influence.

So our team was again at the hospital this week. The staff of one of the teams, Robyn, was able to make connection with a group of people that visited the hospital on Monday. This group of people were coming in to get ready for a film shoot that was going to take place on Friday at the hospital. God started to orchestrate His plans. The team told Robyn that Naomi Campbell was coming to visit the hospital and bring awareness to the conditions these mammas are in. Robyn knew that God was speaking to her about meeting Naomi. She had several words to speak to Naomi and felt that she was supposed to share about our school and about God with Naomi. God is amazing in His plans. So on friday Robyn and two other students went to the hospital to work. We as a team don't go to the hospital on fridays so it was a trip that was specifically for the purposes of God. From the minute they got to the hospital God was putting them to work with mamma's that were delivering, several that were having post delivery problems, and providing opportunity for Robyn to not only meet Naomi and share what God told her to share, but also to meet Princes Sara of Jordan that happened to be there also, and then a famous singer from Tanzania. Not to mention reporters from Australia, and Tanzania. She was able to share about what God was doing through are school, who we were, what we were about. As you can see from the pictures above. All of these people were able to see the type of conditions what these mamma's and staff are enduring and being faced with day after day. It is so excited that we were apart of God's plan in bringing awareness, and starting movement of seeing situations change. I think the most exciting part was the staff that day. Our girls had countless opportunities to share about Jesus with the staff. They were asking why the girls had come on a friday because they know we don't normally come on fridays. When our girls responded with because God spoke that we needed too, it blew them away. They immediately had so many questions about us hearing from God, and what kind of lives we live. As Robyn was telling us the stories last night when she came home she was amazed at how God did not only answer the prayer that we would meet Naomi Campbell but that He went above and beyond and she also met a princes of Jordan and so many other people of power and influence. She was so excited to see God use her, to share with these people, she kept saying little old her. But the thing is, she is being obedient and following God and that is providing her opportunity to do big things in God's kingdom!

I wanted to share and I want to continue sharing stories of good news. I read the BBC news and all the other news websites and it is all sad, depressing news. The world is fallen, we live in sin but God is moving. There are so many stories about God doing miraculous things - where are those on six o clock news? I want you to know, we are here in the midst of seeing God move, work, and bring hope to a nation that doesn't have it!

Okay I have to go, Love and miss so many people. Most of the pictures are from me teaching a women's health care time in the village we live in. We teach every week, then at the hospital. Then the one of me with the mamma and her baby is not the first baby I delivered, but the first baby that I saw God bring back to life. We had to resuscitate the baby and as you can see in the picture, mom and baby were great by God's hand. Then us packed in transport bus, and then going to church in our african outfits!

You are blessed to be a blessing!