Today I had a feeling of pure joy. Sometimes it feels like God is reaching down and giving you a blessing, reminding you why you do what you do. I was reminded again that every day is a gift from God and that regardless of the circumstances we are in…there is always something to give thanks for. We have felt discouraged lately (we have had reasons to feel this way), and yet today I felt encouraged.
I recently wrote about a little girl with a severe nephrotic syndrome in need of a specialty medication called tacrolimus. The good news is that this medication arrived today after its’ long journey of almost 7 weeks! We sent it from Kinshasa two weeks ago and it arrived via Goma today! Praise the Lord! She starts on this medication tomorrow. Pray with me that she will have a good response to the medication.
Today a little boy named Manda, (age 4) walked by himself to receive his therapeutic milk for the first time in a month. His little legs were trembling, but he has the energy and motivation to do it. It has taken over a month to regain his strength to walk again. I can barely recognize him now he has changed so much. He is smiling and has friends. His mother says he began to get sick when his father was killed about 6 months ago. He had a close relationship with his father and it seems that after his passing he slowly lost his appetite and desire to live. Praise the Lord for this little boy and his slow but steady recovery!
We are the only hospital in our area with a feeding program and we are proud of it! We use local resources, local cows, and local ingredients. Why aren’t there more programs like ours? Sometimes I wonder if other people think malnutrition is really a disease, or if it is a curse, or simply what happens when you are poor. It is my hope that we can inspire other health providers from other health zones to use the resources available to them to educate and treat malnutrition.
We recently treated a nurse’s child from another health zone for malnutrition. This nursing director of another health center recognized that her son had a problem. She was so discouraged and desperate when she arrived. After a few weeks her son is doing really well, gaining weight and energy. He needs to gain weight, but he is well on his way. As is often the case this nurse has come with her own burdens to bear. She says that she was able to get pastoral support for her struggling marriage during her time at our hospital. She and her husband have reconciled and are working on their relationship. She will spread the word in her health zone about her child’s improvement and encourage others who need help to get help. She has been so impressed with the little boy Manda’s ability to walk again that she is confident that God is at work at our hospital.
It is our hope at CME-Nyankunde to see lives transformed spiritually, mentally, and physically. Not just the individual, but the whole family. We want to see people restored to a right relationship with God, to gain hope for a better future. Often we see patients arriving in tears, lacking strength to walk. They leave with a new found strength.
We have our daily struggles here, but we keep counting our blessings!
Lindsey (for the Coopers)