provoked…

Happy Friday! I have an unexpected day off. Yesterday afternoon, the manager of the OR I’ve been working in told me to stay home. The OR was very slow in January, so the powers are looking at every little expenditure. It’s the business cycle of things. They have to justify the money they spend for the work that gets done. Sadly, healthcare in America has been a big business for far too many years. My first reaction was to worry. It seems to be my standard MO for the last month. What if my job dries up? What if I don’t work enough days to survive? What if I can’t go to the mission field because I don’t have enough money to pay for it? I was on the train as all these worries swirled through my brain. Again. I heard the still small voice of the Lord, Oh you of little faith. It’s so true! It’s like I can’t even help myself. My only excuse, and it is an excuse, is I learned how to be a worrier from the best championship worrier I know, my mom. It’s so hard to unlearn! But I know I must!

So then I took my thoughts captive. I changed my mind. I thought of how getting the day off could be a blessing and how I could benefit. Because I got the day off, I got to schedule dinner with my two favorite children for tonight. Because I got the day off, I have time to write a nice blog. Because I got the day off, I have time to write a nice newsletter for support. Because I got the day off, I went to a missions class happening at my church. The class was last night. I may not have gone if I had to work because it runs a little late and I was tired. I’m so glad I got to go. We learned about culture and how to make the adjustment to a new one. The pastor also got us thinking about the thing that provoked us into wanting to be missionaries. And think about it I did.

The first short missions trip took me to Haiti. I went with a small group. The leader was a physician who became a friend. We held a medical clinic for most of the days we were there. We saw patients with health issues that are so easily treated in the USA. Here in the United States, you catch a cold and can run to the doctor. We just take it for granted. You get sick, you run to see a doctor. Not so in the third world. It is a time consuming, laborious event. Sadly, most people in the third world wait until they are so sick they can’t stand it anymore before they make the long trip to see a doctor. And usually by then it’s too late to be helped. On one particular day, we saw a little 5 month old baby. She was skin and bone, malnourished because she couldn’t hold any food in her stomach. Our best guess was she was suffering with pyloric stenosis. The pyloric valve is at the bottom of the stomach. It needs to open and close to let food in and pass through to the small intestine for digestion to do its job. When it is stenosed, it doesn’t open. Food doesn’t exit the stomach. Nutrients aren’t absorbed. The stomach becomes too full. The contents are vomited out. The remedy? A very simple ten minute surgery to snip open the valve. It broke my heart to meet this little baby. She was probably going to die from malnutrition because she had no access to this type of surgery. The closest hospital for surgical procedures was Port au Prince, an 8 hour car ride away. But where would they find the money for a ride? The people in the hills and forests live on less than $1 or $2 a day!

This provoked me! How can I help? How can I make a difference in somebody’s life? How can they know how much Jesus loves them? I can go! I can bring what I know, my skills to them! I can tell them how much Jesus loves them! He loves them so much, he’s sending me to Africa so they can be healed, so they can hear the Gospel!

This unexpected day off turned into a huge blessing for me! I needed an attitude adjustment. Getting canceled kicked off a chain of events I needed to make the adjustment, to resolve to stop worrying. When I woke up this morning, there was a voicemail from my company. The hospital that canceled me wanted to know if I could work today after all! I didn’t even hesitate to say no. I already made other plans because the Lord wanted me to have a day off. I didn’t even think about the money! Progress? I’m optimistic. 🙂

His… Michelle
Philippians 1:20

Will you help me help Mercy Ships? No donation is too big or too small! I need to raise $8450. I am committed to contributing 50%. That leaves a balance of $4225. So far I’ve raised $995, leaving a balance of $3230. With your help, the rest should be a snap! Nothing is too hard for the Lord! Please help me help babies like the one I mentioned in this post. You will be so happy you did! To donate visit the following link – Michelle on Mercy Ships. Thanks for all your prayers and support!