It’s that time of year again. July has a special place in the hearts of the people of Ebenezer and Florence. Every July people from our church and community travel to serve and share the Good News of Jesus with the people of Honduras. We’ve been here for a few days with a team of 35 and multiple translators doing medical clinics, worship services, children’s ministry and family ministry events. I asked a few of our team members to share each day what they saw and experienced and today I have four stories to share with you about the good things the Lord is doing in our midst here in Honduras.
Dr. Richard Barfell (Medical Team) Today was our first day in a village medical clinic. I’ve been on several medical mission trips in the past, but I was especially impressed with how efficiently our team operated. Everything ran impeccably and everyone knew their assigned roles. We had a surgical station, an ultrasound station, 5 medical stations, an optical clinic, a laboratory complete with lab technician, and a smooth running pharmacy. All of these resources allowed us to care for as many patients as possible with a wide breadth of pathology.
Our first patient of the day was a young man who had been involved in a horrible blunt trauma incident requiring him to have a significant amount of orthopedic hardware in his right lower leg. Over the years, one of the screws had worked it’s way loose and was painfully pressing on the skin of his ankle and inhibiting him from raising his foot to walk. Dr. Connor, Mr. Huiet and myself were able to successfully remove this surgical screw giving this man a chance to walk without crutches in the near future. We were also able to perform several other minor surgical procedures and treat about 80 medical patients. All in all, this was a markedly successful day from a medicine standpoint.
However, the highlight of the day, and the act that will certainly provide the most lasting benefit, was when Charlie led one of our patients to the Lord. I told Charlie that what she did was more important than what any of the doctors had done throughout the day. I view our labors in tropical medicine as only a platform to declare the good news of Jesus Christ to a people in desperate need of Him. Sure, we can provide medical treatments and some definitive surgical treatments, but we are only putting a Band-Aid on a bleeding aorta given the lack of medical infrastructure in this country. Any lasting or significant impact that we will have on the people of Honduras will be spiritual. It is a true pleasure to continue to work alongside the amazing people of Ebeneezer Baptist Church. They have made this outside her feel welcome and loved! More importantly, they make the Honduran people feel loved and have mirrored Christ with all of their interactions.
Sophie Watson (Children’s Team) Hey there! My name is Sophie, and this is my first time going to Honduras. I work with the children’s ministry here and help out a little with family ministry. Today was our first full day of children’s ministry. (Yesterday was spent prepping, attending a local church service, and doing family ministry at a church.) Before I came to Honduras, I was advised that “you can only really prepare 90%,” and boy, was that true today! We started off our day going to a school, where we thought we were doing a program at an elementary school, but it actually was an older grade school. So, we had to revamp our plans and basically flip our schedule, but everything turned out fine! This afternoon after lunch, we carried bags of groceries and Bibles to homes surrounding the clinic. This was the first time I’d really seen some the living conditions up close. Some of the houses we visited were nicer and had multiple rooms, while many were just one small room; a few were basically metal shacks. Coming into this, I expected to see some of these shacks, but it’s very different when you find yourself standing inside one. One thing I noticed was that no matter how little or how much a family had, they all seemed to keep everything as neat and organized as they could. One of my favorite parts was seeing their faces light up as we handed some of them their first copy of the Bible. It reminded me that we truly take for granted our ability to own a copy of God’s word and read it daily. While we visited, we also had a chance to pray with each family. It was interesting to see that even though some of their lives seemed so different than ours, they still have many of the same worries and concerns as us (family, cancer, sickness, etc.). It was such a blessing to be able to spend time with each family and be able to bless them, even if in a small way.
Logan Grimsley (Medical Team) Coming back to Honduras as an RN has been different because now I understand the medical lingo. I’ve started my career in postpartum recently so I was hoping to see a lot of pregnant women. Today, I was able to set up an OB ultrasound and I automatically knew how to take care of her. For instance, not letting her lay flat on her back and propping one hip higher than the other to prevent decreased blood flow to the baby. I calculated her estimated date of delivery and assessed her fundal height to figure out how many weeks she was. I loved being able to know what to do instead of having to ask others what needed to be done like in years past. On another note, I got to administer multiple IM injections to different people. I knew where to give the injection and and the kind of medicine I was giving. I feel more confident in helping take care of the people here in Honduras after becoming an RN. I’m so blessed to have finally achieved this life long goal of mine, becoming a nurse. I only pray that God will continue to use me to share his love with all the patients I come in contact with. As well as always using my best judgement for the lives that are in my hands. Please continue to pray for our journey here in Honduras.
Charlie Goode (Family Ministry/Optical/Witnessing) Presumptions and confusion were in high regards in my mind as I contemplated how the Lord would use me giving out glasses to bring Him glory. Little did I know, He had plans to show up in a mighty way, as He always does. My translator and I would work with each person until we found that exact fit for their eyes. After, we gave the patient their glasses, I would explain to them that it is important to see with their eyes, but it is most important to see Jesus in their heart. There is nothing more crucial or satisfying than that. Some people were exuberant as they agreed with my statement, but some were confused and withdrawn. I had the opportunity to share the plan of salvation with three of my patients that expressed that they did not know Jesus. Each person left with Jesus in their heart. How absolutely beautiful it was to see people pass over from blind to full sight, both physically and spiritually.
These were just four of the testimonies of our 35 team members. Can you imagine now how much the Lord is doing in each of our lives and all the stories that could be told? Thank you church for sending us. Thank you for giving and thank you for praying for us all. God has been and will continue to be with us as we follow Him across this country sharing help, healing and the love of Christ with everyone He puts in our path. Check back tomorrow for more testimonies of what the Lord has done.