After a long day of travel, we finally made it to our destination- Estanzuela, Zacapa Guatemala! After getting off the plane, we still had over a four hour drive. We made the best of it and were able to get to know each other as a team and even worship together on the drive over. We went straight to the church and were served a delicious dinner of london broil, potato, rice and fried plantains! We were ready for an early bedtime to prepare for our first day on Saturday.
Our first day in Guatemala started off with a bang! This amazing team hosted and all day medical clinic and we saw over 100 people come through. It was quite amazing to see how God orchestrated everything and how smooth the day went. God touched them each in a personal way. It was a pretty cool experience to be able to learn about the patients and provide the help they needed. Many people in the community left with vitamins, tums, pain relievers, aspirin or cold and sinus medication.
Throughout the day, we saw a common issue that many people complained about was not being able to eat. And when they did eat, they would get indigestion. Needless to say, Tums were a hot commodity and we learned it is next to impossible for them attain tums here in Guatemala. (We even had fun teaching them how to eat the tums- some were quite confuse about this process) We also had to teach them to suck a cough drop and not swallow it or chew it. The community has never had anything offered to them like this before. They we quite enthralled with the entire process.
Each person on the team did an incredible job helping to make the day so successful: Sarah did an amazing job as our official RN and she was accompanied by a Guatemalan doctor. Sarah was a hero for many people as she listened to their story and prescribed them each medicines or vitamins that will help them. She ended the day seeing a spunky and adorable older lady and possibly detected some underlying heart issues. Jessica helped keep order in the clinic and made sure everyone transitioned from station to station in a proper and effective manner. Without her I am sure it would have been a hot mess!! Heather really embraced the concept that language does not have to be a barrier. She formed a relationship with a Guatemalan nurse and they worked beautifully together in the triage. Chuck and Jim did a wonderful Job and fought through the tiredness in the pharmacy counting out pills and making sure all the prescriptions got filled. I think Chuck even got some pretty cool high 5’a throughout the day. Amber helped people fill out the information form and was merciless in her pursuit to make sure everyone stayed for the final station of prayer. (she even chased down a couple of people to make them come back for prayer.) Alison and Kenedi ended the patients’ time at the clinic by praying for every patient individually. The way they worked together was beautiful . Kenedi knew Just went to play the right worship song at just the volume to coincide with Alison’s prayer. However, the gold star of the day definitely has to go to Jim. He was able to save us from a scorpion and snake that were at our bedroom doors. He slayed and killed them with hardly any effort, so we definitely appreciate his heroism!!
When you come to a new country and serve people, you really never know what you are getting into. It is not until you are fully immersed that you can start seeing the purpose and intent to why God called you to go. We saw many heartbreaking stories throughout the day. These stories tug at your heart and can bring tears to your eyes from just hearing the pain that some of them have to endure. But it is also in those moments that you can see God the most and remind the patients of Jesus’ unconditional love for them. We were able to embrace many, many people today and tell them that God loves them.
I would say the first day was a huge success.
In the name of Jesus we rebuke anymore critters from trying to invade our personal space!
Your faithful Guatemalan team 2017
Chuck, Alison, Jim, Sarah, Heather, Kenedi, Jessica and Amber (-: