Medical Ministries are more than just traveling to another country to help the poor, but also helping and sharing Christ with others daily, as Pedro Gismondi, M.D. shares here.
One day I was going to the post office a bit forlorn and thinking, "The Lord forgot to give me my assignment today." I had an herbal remedy with me in the car for days and I thought it could be very good for this dear sister in the Lord.
This particular friend and patient lives alone. She had awakened that very morning very depressed and was crying and praying to the Lord that He would tell her doctor to find a medicine for her problem...and I showed up at her door with this bottle and said to her, "I've been thinking about you and wondering that perhaps this will be helpful for you."
Actually I am not sure that it will be helpful, but I hope that it will. Perhaps a visit and a word with her doctor was enough for this particular day.
Another day I was in the clinic and I was seeing this Latin lady for the first time. Other doctors had labeled her diagnosis "fibromyalgia" which dismisses other causes of generalized pain in some patients. Yet, instead of asking, "Where do you hurt?" I asked, "Where are you from?"
She said, "Peru...Tarapoto."
"Well," I said, "my sister lives in that very town near the jungle."
The town is famous for some of the best cacao trees (chocolate) in the world. She mentioned how her sister won important prizes in a cacao event in Paris, and she started talking about the fact that she became a citizen in the U.S. a number of years ago and now, of course, she can vote.
At that point, an opening came for me to ask, "You are Catholic, right?"
And she answered, "I was baptized in the Catholic Church by my parents, but when I came to this country, I became a Christian."
This needs an explanation, right? In Peru a "Christian" means that a person - Catholic or not - is truly a devout believer who reads the Bible. Here she goes to an evangelical church and became teary-eyed and very emotional sharing that she was so certain God gave her the opportunity to come to this country to get to know God's love and Jesus' sacrifice for her.
And now she found a Christian doctor that she could trust to help her as the Bible says. "...Especially to those who are of the household of faith. (Galatians 6:10)"
It turns out she has inflammation arthritis with involvement of her spine and also her peripheral joints. No wonder she hurts everywhere.
Related article: What it's like to be a medical missionary
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