Finding Health and Healing in the Hard Places

As I sat in a hospital room on Tuesday afternoon, I knew one thing: my best friend certainly didn’t want to be there, but I’m so grateful she could be.

On Monday night, my best friend was the victim of an accident that left her arm cut open, the tendons and muscles ripped through. It was a dramatic scene that culminated in a call to 9-1-1 and a trip to the Emergency Room. We sat in that emergency room from about 11 p.m. until about 4 a.m. when we were released to go home until they called her back for surgery the next morning.

Photo from: Stocksy

Photo from: Stocksy

Most people in the hospital don’t want to be there because it means they are in poor health or condition, but imagine if you couldn’t go to the hospital, or if the fees associated with the hospital made it impossible. Imagine not being able to access any medical facilities because there were none you could walk to and driving wasn’t a feasible option. Or upon arrival, the staff were unsure how to care for you. That’s the reality for so many places across the world. Access to quality medical care is lacking in many countries Food for the Hungry (FH) works in, but we’d like to change that.

In the parable of the sheep and goats in Matthew 25, Jesus reminds us that we should take care of the sick for “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me,” (Matthew 25:40). I’ve been focusing on this verse a lot with my friend in the hospital and the reminder that so many sick go uncared for.

Beneficiary Enos Wasangai in Uganda, Africa broke his leg and FH funded his much needed medical treatment and surgeries

Beneficiary Enos Wasangai in Uganda, Africa broke his leg and FH funded his much needed medical treatment and surgeries

I think of beneficiary Enos Wasangai in Uganda. When he was 14, Enos fell out of a papaya tree. His knee became swollen and painful to the point of debilitation. His parents lacked the funds to send him to the hospital, leaving them feeling hopeless. Then FH stepped in. FH provided the funds for Enos’s medical treatment.

In his first treatment, doctors drained the fluid from around his knee and he seemed to be recovering well. FH staff from the Mbale office visited often and encouraged his family. And then Enos got worse. The surgical cut in his knee opened, causing severe bleeding. Many thought he would die. His family even began saying their goodbyes.

But that wasn’t the end of Enos’ story. By God’s grace and the saving replenishment of a blood transfusion, Enos survived! He continued to battle pain and infection for two months. FH staff continued to visit and spend time in prayer with Enos and his family. Over time, he healed completely. Praise God!

This story has a happy ending. My friend’s story will have a happy ending too. Let’s work together to ensure that people have access to good quality medical care without financial and logistical roadblocks keeping them from a happy ending too.

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