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Healing Belief

Spirituality (i.e. individual practices) and religion (i.e. communal practices) influence health through pathways of behaviors, social support, psychology, and supernatural laws.
– Oman & Thorensen, 2002 cited in The Influence of Religion on Health
Beloved, I pray that you prosper in all things and be in health even as your soul prospers.John
This week, as Debbie traveled from assisting Corbin, Verlin spent some time at our Ivorian way-station. After a few days of quiet, word started getting around that he was ‘hanging out’ in Bondoukou. While there are needs elsewhere for follow-up in Community Health Evangelism (CHE) and Discovery Bible Study (DBS) trainings, need exists here too. We sense that God used our failure to raise the last 10% of diversified financial support before returning in March 2016 to ground Verlin a bit. That’s not bad. Being grounded is necessary. Even electrical power does not work without grounding!

So it was this week that counsel happened for various ailments and follow-up of our introduction to Health Education Program for Developing Communities (HEPFDC) in tandem with some DBS.

Trees in the yard
used to develop self-care

Some who were suffering, or recovering, from malaria were seen to reinforce the knowledge of when to stay at home and when to go see a doctor. A Friday visit represented the misdirection of curative care here that tempts many to dismiss the Lord’s plan for the nations and ‘do it better’ by dismissing, rather than developing, national health care systems. A young woman passed-by who had been carrying water while visiting family in a village. She experienced a muscular spasm around her neck (C5-C6) that continues to cause her pain. The cause was not recognized. Family diligently sent her to a local physician who examined her. He prescribed a simple pain reliever and had her family pay for an X-ray of her LOWER back (L1-L5). As a result, the closest DBS–HEPFDC leader shared her plight and added to his knowledge as Verlin listened and read her history. Verlin instructed on how her injury and continued pain were likely related to dehydration and a lack of sufficient dietary magnesium. The instructions couched in the Biblical record of our bodies being formed of earth and that the earth provides for our mineral and vitamin needs through its vegetation and the creatures eating it fortified her faith. She left with instructions for hydration and nutrition from moringa, or small digestible bones, to help relax the affected muscle and let her vertebral spacing renew. For her, as for the now hundreds previously likewise ‘cured’ by this CHE induced integration of physical and spiritual understandings, Verlin expects a complete recovery brought by her better understanding and application of the simple Gospel. Her religion gives her a context to inform behavior, provide social support and let her to grasp that God’s laws for her self-care are unchanging, though they may be misunderstood. She knows her relation to Christ has a tangible and daily impact on her life.


Prayer and Praise
  • Pray with us for Ivorian leaders to catch the vision of focusing on CHE approaches for childrens’ health. The tools are available. A team could spend their entire time training educators all over the country.
  • We are thankful for answered prayers in getting Corbin settled in St. Charles, MO. Debbie returned to Tennessee on Thursday. She takes a few days to resolve a vehicle’s air-conditioning problem and a respiratory issue. She then anticipates traveling to Michigan to see family and ministry partner friends.
  • Just as many churches struggle in the summer with less giving, so do many missionary ministries. Ask the Lord to provide abundant resources for His many witnesses to continue unhindered, including ours.
Your partners in the Gospel,
Verlin and Debbie


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