Tuesday - March 10, 2020
The team and staff began our day with breakfast and a time of centering as we introduced ourselves to one another. This gave everyone a chance to meet those with whom we might not be working directly as we enter into another day of clinic.
After the team coated themselves with bug spray, we all boarded the bus and traveled to La Chuchilla where 165 people were seen in the medical clinic. Due to the rain and weather conditions some of the community were kept from coming out and obtaining medical care. Those who did come received care for things like ear infections, respiratory distress, cardiac concerns, high/low blood pressure and diabetes. Once the clinic was over, the team enjoyed spending time with “los ninos” playing Musical Chairs, Simon Says, Red-Light Green-Light, coloring, and blowing bubbles.
Arriving back at La Casa de Alfredo, the team enjoyed another wonderful dinner. Nurse Megan led us in our evening discussion. Megan shared thoughts on communicating with others through both spoken language and body language. We have a cadre of interpreters who assist the medical team when interviewing patients, yet many times a smile, a hug, or a kind gesture mean so much more to a child than a thousand words.
Dr Marvin explained how to calm a fretful 18 month old child by sitting on the floor to examine her lungs, heart, ears, nose, and throat, because it then empowers the child and they feel less threatened ... therefore at ease and more cooperative with the unfamiliarity of a new face.
The team experienced this phenomenon in many ways today as we connected with young children, anxious about tooth extractions. They became less anxious and more joyful by popping bubbles with our team and staff.
Wednesday - March 11, 2020
The morning began with the birds serving as our alarm. At 5:30am they were right on schedule with their calling. Their chirping sounded as if they were saying “It’s time to get up. It’s time to get up.” One team member responded, “I don’t wanna get up. I don’t wanna get up.”
After Tuesday’s tropical downpours, the mountain roads to the next village were washed out, so we visited the community of Agua Blanquita instead. Thankfully the sun appeared, we arrived safely at the village, and were warmly welcomed by children and adults hugging and thanking us for coming.
As Peggy’s husband texted her this morning, “...as you know, nothing happens by accident. God’s in control. So, have your spiritual ears and eyes open for the reason...”
We soon learned the reason for our visit to Agua Blanquita today: a three year-old with cerebral palsy, a 30 year-old with Down’s Syndrome, and two young brothers whose mother has abandoned them.
Our team served 132 patients medically, emotionally and spiritually. At the end of our visit, doctors and nurses played ball, colored pictures, blew soap bubbles, prayed with and hugged the children and adults. It’s the joyful things in life that make it worthwhile.
We stopped at a local coffee shop on the way back to Alfredo’s house. Before dinner Lydia took us on a tour of the FOBF compound to help the team better understand the importance of its mission and how we play such a pivotal role. Many of you are a part of making things happen here with your ongoing prayers and financial support.
Dana led a devotion including scripture from Galatians 5:22-28 & Isaiah 6:8. The team then discussed what it means to be called and share in the fruits of the spirit as we each said “Yes Lord, send me.” We don’t always know why God is sending us or calling us to give of our time or change our plans. If we continue to act in faith even when we might be challenged by the circumstances of life…maybe, just maybe, if we “keep our spiritual ears and eyes open” we will discover the reason. The God who knows and see ALL has the bigger plan.
Tonight we go to sleep with grateful hearts to be part of a “family” bound together in and through el amor de Jesucristo.
~Dana & Nancy