Monday, July 30, 2012

Team Imagine-----Ukraine

I am sure there were many people excited to see the Team Imagine return to The States, after their two weeks in the Ukraine.  I am sure that previous seeds were watered, growth of older plants groomed, while some new seeds planted.  What a successful trip for His Glory!  It will be interesting to see next year what growth has taken place.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

How specific is God in what He wants?

This morning I traveled to Santa Cruz to worship with the congregation there. 

One of the young men in the congregation had a good message.  He talked about how specific God was when He told Noah about building the ark.  He did not just leave him hanging how how big to build it, what to build it with or what types of animals to carry inside.  He was very specific and left no questions.

God was also specific when he told Moses how to build the Tabernacle.  Again, he did not leave him wondering on the types of materials he was to use.  In Exodus 25:9, God told Moses to build it exactly the way he was instructed.

Though the remainder of the Bible, we see how God specifically gave instructions.  If man obeyed, he enjoyed a close walk with God.  If he disobeyed, sometimes there was punishment and at times it brought even death. 

God has not changed.  His rules, desires and laws still remain valid today.

Many times people want to point fingers at other people, taking on the role of God, trying to tell people what they should or should not do.  I think it would behoove each of us to be certain that how we are living is in accordance to God's will.  Yes, we need to help others, but if we are not familiar with the scriptures, our teaching might not be the same as God's.

Just a thought.  God love, remains faithful and his vengeance, remains as powerful.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

"Oh, by the way................."

During the last five years, here in Guatemala, I have enjoyed sharing my, "Oh by the way............." stories.  Today, I have another one for you.

Josue and I carefully made our way to Chicua this morning.  We continue to have the clinic in the home of Alicia, right on the highway.  It was a very cool morning and as we got closer to Chicua, we  had less sun and more wind.

No one was waiting for us as we arrived.  We set up clinic and waited until we had a few patients.

One lady, was walking with crutches, and was having a difficult time.  I did her consult upstairs, so she would not have to maneuver down the steep steps.

The patient after her, came to clinic due to having a history of high blood pressure and gastritis.  About two years ago, she went to the hospital in Solola because of nose bleeds.  They told her that she had high blood pressure, so from time-to-time she buys a pill and takes it.  We are not sure what medicine it is and she is not sure the last time she took one. We chatted for quite a while on how she needs to better care for her blood pressure.

Then we talked about her stomach problems.

I always end the consult asking a few times if there is anymore........or anything else.......that the patient would like to talk about.  As we were getting ready to conclude.......the patient says, "Oh, by the way.............a year ago, I fell in the highway and hurt my leg."  I asked her if I could look at her leg.  She then lefts her skirt to reveal this knee.........

I just took a nice, deep breath and continued to ask questions.  I could tell that Alicia knew nothing about this.  The patient then tells us that she had gone to a hospital after it happened and they told her that they would not do surgery, due to her high blood pressure.  They told her that they would not let her die in their hospital.

I will see if there is anything that we can do to help her. 

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Clinic in Lemoa

We had a full day in the Lemoa clinic.  It is good to have Lisa and Kemmel back with us!

Several interesting patients made their way to our clinic today.  We had a few diabetics, a few expecting mothers, several with stomach issues and one little girl with a very nervous mother.

One mother brought her little girl for a consult, who from time-to-time feels very bad.  For the last year, she has episodes where she feels faint, her lips turn blue, and she has difficulty breathing.  This has happened 7-8 times over the last year but yesterday, while she was in school, she lost consciousness.

I talked to the mother about taking her little girl to the national hospital, Santa Elena, for a consult there.  I think she will need some very expensive lab work and exams.  If she can get her into the governmental system, she will do much better than being seen at a private clinic.  I asked Gaspar to talk to them before they left Lemoa.  As they were leaving, the mother told me that she will return to see us.

I know the mother would appreciate your prayers for her daughter.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Exciting update in Xepol

This morning, I went to Xepol with Gaspar, Manuel and Josue.  We had a good, uneventful drive. 

It was a chilly morning and we were told that is why there were not many patients.  I learned a long time ago, that the number of patients is not always the best indicator of a clinic.............and today, was one of those days.

This young boy came with his dad to clinic.  As I was talking to his dad and mom, he wanted my attention but sat quietly until we finished the consult.

His dad has a chronic ear infection that looked very irritated.  He attended the clinic last month with Lisa and he felt better after seeing her.  He and his family do not worship any where, so Gaspar and I talked with him about this.

I mentioned to him that many people say that they believe in God, and that is good, but that does not mean that they actually know Him or have a relationship with Him.  Many people believe, but do not obey. Gaspar shared some scriptures with him and hopefully, he will return to clinic next month.

The exciting news of the day was about Victor's dad.  You may remember Victor from previous blogs.  He is a young man that has had seizures for his whole life.  Until about two years ago, he was having one or more a day and also fighting with all of the children in the area.  This last month, he only had a few symptoms in his hand and he is doing so well.  He is now even helping build the new church building after the old one was destroyed by a mud slide.

Last month, Victor's dad invited Tomas, one of the men from the church, to visit him in his house.  This is very new for Victor's dad!  I have never met him, since he has never come to clinic with Victor, but he has continued to meet with Tomas and discuss the Bible. 

Later in August, Gaspar, Tomas and I will visit with Victor and his family in their home.  I am looking forward to this day and pray that something will be said that will help Victor's dad make a decision about the direction of his life. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Clinic in Chutzurob

Today, Gaspar, Josue, Manuel and I traveled to Chutzurob.  When we were arriving, we saw the gatherings for two community events so we were concerned if anyone would come to clinic.  We did have a few patients......which is better than none.

This patient, just found out that she is pregnant with their third child.  The little girl was playing and having a good time digging around in her bag until the camera came out.  Oh well..........such is Guatemalan Photography.

She told me that she will return to the clinic in August....................we look forward to seeing her again!

Lisa and Kemmel will be back soon.  It will be nice to have them back with us but know they will be missed by their families.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Where is your confidence? In God or Man?

This morning, I went to Santa Cruz for their morning worship.  The congregation is continuing to grow and what a blessing this is.

The gentleman that brought the lesson, started with a question.  He asked, "Where is your confidence?  Is it in God or Man?"  Of course, everyone wants to give the correct answer and say, "Of course my confidence is in God.  Maybe we should not answer so quickly, but take a few minutes to think on this.

He read several passages from Psalms.

Psalm 7:1-2-----Oh Lord my God, in thee do I put my trust:  save me from all them that persecute me and deliver me.  Lest he tear my soul like a lion, rending it in pieces, while there is not to deliver.

Psalm 118:8----It is better to trust in the lord that to put confidence in man.

We know that David had his struggles.  I am sure that his confidence in God did not always come easy.  To know that we should be a certain way, verses the actuality of being there, sometimes are two different things.  

This young man went on to confess that his confidence has been in man.  It was his sincere confession and it was emotional.  He could have just preached his lesson and stopped but he did not.  He made startling confession.

We were in the truck a few weeks ago and were talking about confessions and how we really do not confess to each other.  There are many reasons for this, but that does not make it right.  Confession and repentance are Bibical teachings.  

God will never fail us but man will.

Please pray for two people in the Santa Cruz congregation.  One young man needed to have his appendix removed last week and now he has developed pneumonia.  He remains in ICU.  Another man, was bitten by a dog with rabies.  He is now in the hospital in Guatemala City for treatment.

Also, the Ukraine team is still doing well!!  They are healthy and in good spirits.  They have enjoyed seeing people that they met last year and have been able to continue with  Bible teaching.  Please pray for their safe travels as they will be returning to the states soon.



Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Body Worlds in Guatemala City

Yesterday, our group had the opportunity to visit Body World in Guatemala City.  It is an exhibit about the human body that is making it's way around the world.  It was fascinating and I think everyone in our group enjoyed it. 

When we arrived, there were not many people ahead of us.  Kemmel, had made our reservations it was a good time to arrive. 

We know how complicated the human body is but really brought it to a new dimension.  I am just not sure how someone can not believe in God.

The exhibit was one that displayed bones, muscles, different organs.............knowing that your skin is your largest organ, this man holds his in his hands.

Truly amazing...........bones, muscles, nerves, electrical conduction.........all must function in unison to accomplish the task.

And all of it starts the brain.  My brain photo was not the best.

There was also an exhibit on smoking and the side effects that is causes.  You can see the damaged lungs on the cadaver's left side.

Health lung on the left and and one diagnosed with cancer on the right.  There were also cross samples of bone and leg tissue taken from a smoker to show how nicotine also affects other parts of the body.

What a machine.............

Two football players during a tackle.

After the exhibit we enjoyed lunch in the mall.  Most people opted for Burger King while a few others went for Chinese and Taco Bell.  I gave my fries away so save room for a DQ Blizzard.......carmel pecan.  Sarahbeth found her favorite yogurt place, which I was not familiar with. We took several photos of her there and the guy was amused! I love providing people with entertainment. I will post one of her when I get it.

It was a long day but a good one!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Clinic in Mactzul V

This morning, Josue met me in the road and we went to get Manuel. We arrived without any problems in Mactzul V and Sarahbeth was waiting for us.

As we started unpacking everything and setting up clinic, the guys started looking through some of the glasses that we now have. Josue was trying them on and snapped a few photos of himself with them was pretty cute.

Here is Mynor, Manuel, Josue and Sarahbeth trying to give me their most serious Guatemalan look.  Mynor and Manuel are having a hard time with the price tags will hanging!

We had a good clinic, even though it was a small one.

After the last patients were seen, we went to Tomas' house for lunch.  Juana had prepared us a wonderful beef soup and tortillas. We really appreciate her kindness.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Clinics in Lemoa

Yesterday and today, we had clinics in Lemoa at Clinica Carris

Yesterday was a ladies clinic so Sarahbeth and I was fifteen patients.  It was a busy day but a good one.

Today, we saw 29 patients.  This is Sarahbeth with Maria and Sandra before our clinic began today.

We have seen wide variety of patients in the last two day,  Women with different needs, a child with a hernia, diabetic patients, children with bronchitis, possible gall bladder illness and urinary infections.

This is Sarahbeth with some children in the afternoon.  They were full of energy.

Tomorrow, we will be out in Mactzul V where Sarahbeth is living.

Hopefully, Gaspar will be able to follow-up with a family that we saw today.  They had some very specific needs and maybe they will let us help them.  We will see.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

South Fork Church of Christ returns to the Ukraine

This Wednesday, a group from the South Fork Church of Christ returns to the Ukraine.  I am not sure how many years that they have made this trip but it has been several. 

I ask that you pray for their safety as they make their travels, that the teachings of Christ will be accepted and that people will understand the importance of their relationship with God.

Those going from Winston Salem, will be Terry, Tina, Andrea, Leslie, Adam, Stephen, Dylan, Emilee, Audrey and Sue Ann.

The Ukrainian translators will be Kat, Kata, Sasha, Julie, Nataly and Vica.

Your prayers are very important and vital for the ministry. I know that the teams would really appreciate them. Thank you!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Sunday in Chichi

This morning, we all met for our worship time in Santo Tomas. Then several people went to the market to buy different things that they wanted.   I was able to get a few more photos.

This is Cara.  She was also down last year when we did the programs in the schools.  She was a lot of fun with the students last year.  Cara, thank you again for the peanut butter and Diet. Dr. Pepper!   

This is Dr. Jim and Barbara and they are regular visitors here in Guatemala, making two trips a year!  A special thank you for bringing me Diet Dr. Pepper!  You know how much I enjoy it!

I was so excited this trip to find out that Jim and Barbara know Ray and Betty.  When I was growing up in Michigan, we attended the same congregation.  It was nice to get "reconnected."

This is the Steve, Haley, Somer and Lydia.........who all have been coming down for a few years.  Steve is a physical therapist and we keep him busy with many chronic pains.  Thank you for the doughnut today!  They found our favorite bakery!

This is the Stanley Family........Cara, Julie, Dave and Abbey.  Dave is a pathologist and is always willing to help out.  Julie always helps Dr. Jim and I look forward to seeing you again in November. 

This is Hannah, Kay, Jon, Adriana and Matthew.  I first met Kay and Jon about 6 years ago.  Hannah worked with the children this week. Adriana and Matthew translated for patients and helped in many aspects.

I am sorry that I did not get more photos of everyone.  It was a good week and we really appreciate everyone's hard work. Now, we will return to Guatemala City for the night.

Please remember Lisa and Kemmel in your prayers.  They will be traveling to The States for a couple of weeks.  We hope that they have safe travels and enjoy time with their families!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Clinic in Chuchipaca

Several of us went to Chuchipaca for clinic today. I was a smaller clinic, in size, than we usually have but I trust that lives were touched. We never know what needs that patients have but they are not always physical, in nature.

This is the group as they were checking in. We welcomed everyone and then prayed. Matthew and Josue are standing where we had the pharmacy area.  Josue was very complimentary on how Matthew worked in the pharmacy.

This is Adriana and Lori, who took vital signs before the patients had their consults.

Hannah worked again with the children and she did a great job.  She noticed that the children were a little slower getting started today from when we were in Paxot II.  The difference may be that we have the ABC Program in Paxot II.  This type of activity may be new to these children if they have not been to a clinic before.

Aura, Marcos and Maury in the dental area.  Aura, is our dental student and she is in her fourth year of dental school.  She continues to do well and we look forward to the time that she will work with us full-time.

We had about 25 medical patients and about the same for dental.

I saw one new diabetic that said she would return in fifteen days.  There was one gentleman that needs to have cataract surgery and one lady that continues to suffer from being assaulted.

After clinic, we returned to Clinic Carris to empty the trucks.  The group will enjoy the market tomorrow after our worship and then we will travel to Guatemala City.  Please pray for our safe travels.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Jornada in Paxot II

Today, several of us went to Paxot II for clinic.  We had a great day!

Josue worked in pharmacy but helped Nancy with some of the patients.  Here he is with some of the first patients.

This brother and grandmother are part of the same family.

Adriana prayed with patients after their consults.  This is a wonderful thing for the patients.  She also was able to talk with them over special problems they have.  We had one young man that had been in a bad bus accident 8 years ago when his bus went over a cliff.  Many people died in that accident and he still suffers from this.  Many things in life are difficult but only Christ can give us hope that we need.  I think that Adriana was able to help him.

Sandy, translated for Steve today as he worked with patients that needed physical therapy.  Steve worked with a young man that was at the clinic last year but would not let Steve help him.  He returned in pain again today and now he has changed his feelings.

Between patients, Sandy spent time with the young mothers and babies as they waited for their consult.

Nancy decided that she could get this baby to smile.........and smile, he did!!

Dental stayed busy today.  Dr. Jim and Julie help a patient.

Marcos, Lydia, Martina and Josefina helping another dental patient.

Paxot II has a large ABC Program so the children are always ready to play or do whatever is suggested. This young girl was playing catch with Hannah.

We enjoyed a lunch of chicken pepian, tamalitos and fresh green chili. 

There were about 32 medical patient and about 36 dental patients.  It was a really good day.  We all returned to Chichi without problems and we are so thankful for that.

Tomorrow is another day.........another adventure!!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Today, several of us went to Xepocol for clinic. Gaspar told me that he was concerned that we would not have many patients since it is the big market day in Chichi but we did ok.

This is Dave and Sara Beth.  Dave is a pathologist, who is willing to come down here and do anything that he can do.  Sarah Beth is an intern and will spend a few weeks with us after the group leaves.  She will live with Tomas' family during this time.

This is Kay and Nancy.  Kay did all of our vital signs today before the patients went for consult.  Nancy is a mid-wife so she helped us with our pregnant ladies and those who needed something special.

This is one of the first patients we had during the morning.  He was enjoying the attention that he was getting.  Abby is to the left of Kay and Nancy.  She helped translate today and keep things organized.

This is Lydia with one of the patients.  Lydia prayed with the patients after their consult.   Prayer is very important in our clinics.  The patients need to know why we do what we do and that we want to share the gospel with them. 

We finished the day with 26 dental patients and 16 medical patients.  It was a good day.  We will have two clinics tomorrow and I am sure it will be another good day.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy 4th of July!

HAPPY 4th of July!!

The group arrived this afternoon with Rick and they did not have any problems.  We are very thankful for this and then enjoyed dinner together.  I was gifted some Diet Dr. Pepper........a special thank you to the Stanley family for that! I told them my criteria for when I drink it.  It has to be a sunny day and I drink it sitting on my porch.  Thank you!

We met after dinner for a brief meeting to plan for tomorrow.  There are several new people here and I am sure they will enjoy their stay with us.

About a year ago, I was lucky to be able to have the Gamma Knife done for my trigeminal neuralgia.  I am so thankful for this and also thankful that I no longer have any pain.  I just heard that Dr. Ellis, who did this procedure, recently died and I am sad for his family.  Please pray for his family, as I am sure they are struggling.  He worked at Wake Forest Medical Center with Dr. Branch and I will never forget how they helped me. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Back in Chichi and photos from Ft. Myers

I was able to spend the last two weeks in Florida with my parents and Sally also visited us.  I posted a few photos on Facebook during this time but then when Tropical Storm Debby hit, we did not have any internet access.

I just wanted to post a few more of my favorite photos.

This is at Lover's Key Beach.
During the two weeks, we were able to enjoy the sun for two days.

My mom and dad on the beach. This is dad with his Guatemalan cane.  He looks really good walking with it!

The sunset in Ft. Myers.

It was a good two weeks.  I enjoyed the time with my parents.

Now it is time to get back to work.  Tomorrow, a group from the states arrives and we will have clinics together for a few days.  Please pray for their safe flights and that we will have good clinics.