Sunday, September 23, 2012

Guinea screening - “The longest line I have ever seen”

Over the past few years I’ve called several different countries “home” and this year is no exception. For the next 10 months I will now be calling Guinea my home.

Sometimes when I close my eyes and think about where God has me, I need to open them just to make sure I am not dreaming.

If I rewind 10 years and think about what was on my bucket list, living in Africa was definitely not on it. Now, all I want to do is hold my bucket up to God and say “here you go, it’s not my bucket anymore”. 

Living such a life definitely has its challenges. Take our recent screening day for example.

It was so physically draining. Our day started at 4.30am and we finished seeing our last patient around 8.30pm. 

I have never seen so many people in one line.  

Over 3,500 people all lined up waiting to see if we could help them. 

Unless someone reminds you to have a drink of water and take a break then you honestly just forget to.

Then there is the emotional roller-coaster. So many ups and downs. One minute you are saying to mother you can help her child.

and the very next you are saying, “sorry we can’t”.

About half way through the day when things were getting very busy I was handed a 3yo girl who presented with a hypoxic brain injury who was incontinent; unable to move her arms and legs; couldn’t speak; and who was still being breast-fed – someone whom we couldn’t help.

Sometimes the bucket is very heavy. In these instances I am just glad that God is right there helping me hold it up.

One thing I have learned over the past few screenings is that we are limited in our understanding and our ability to help others, however God on the other hand, is not. Sometimes God chooses to use us in bringing healing through surgery; sometimes it is through us bringing truth into their lives by saying that they are not a curse.

And sometimes we don’t know what God is doing and during these times I trust that He is a lot smarter than I and that He knows what He is doing still has a way of reaching them.

Even after days like these I still say, “It’s not my bucket”.

God is good.