Ministry Through Healing

Tuesday we spent our afternoon doing VBS at a church called Luz del Mundo. The building is a mere tin shack with a bumpy dirt floor and half of a flimsy metal wall in the back half of the church.
     We finished our VBS, which consisted of a prayer, songs, the story of Jonah and the whale acted out by willing kids, and games. Amidst playing hot potatoe, Jesse (our translator/protector/father-figure that we call Padre) noticed an infected gash on the big toe of a little boy named Michael. His one toe was twice the size of his other. Concern washed over Padre’s  face and he brought it to mine and Jessie’s (our leader) attention. I grimaced as Michael limped away to join a marble game after showing us his toe.
Jessie looked at me and suggested I pray over him. I glanced at the boy and felt a tug on my heart. I walked over and asked what had happened. After he told me an animal had bitten him, I told him I was going to pray over him in English. I knelt down, took his hand, and prayed for this little boy, no more than 8 years old, with an untreated wound that he should not be bearing.
     Turns out, God used me to answer my own prayer. I ended up running back to our hostel (for the sanity of my family, I was not alone) to get the medical supplies I had brought for myself. Who knew I would use them for something like this? God.
Returning to Luz del Mundo, I called Michael over and sat him down on a plastic chair across from me. Padre  appeared by my side and immediately began looking through what I had brought. He started washing the toe with water and wiping away layers of grime. Assisting him during that time became one of the longest five minutes of my life. We had to pin Michael’s leg down and hold his hands while Padre cleaned around the puncture wounds. He worked at it until the raw wounds were visible, the infection was squeezed out, and the bacteria killed with rubbing alcohol. My own body was sweating and I could barely handle hearing Michael’s wails, gasps, and screaming, let alone look at his face twisted from pain.
     His body shaking and wimpers escaping his trembling lips, this little boy sat exhausted after we had bandaged his foot. I wrapped his sweat-soaked body in a big hug before giving him the remaining bandages. He hobbled out of the building down the street, followed by a string of children giving him support with compassion etched across their faces.
     Helping this little boy in such a small way made my heart about to explode. When we go back to the church next week, I will bring more supplies and treat his toe again. I know if we had not been there to help him, he would have lost his toe, if not his whole foot. I hurt to think of all the other children in need of medical attention but I must remember that God is still God. He will guide our team to the right people so that we can become a piece in the broken puzzle of their lives.
     To Him be the glory.


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