Most laws condemn the soul and pronounce sentence. The result of the law of my God is perfect. It condemns but forgives. It restores – more than abundantly – what it takes away.Jim Elliot
She came to Mercy broken, intending to choose adoption for the child growing inside of her. The baby would be taken to the orphanage a few hours after birth while her postpartum body was still healing.
Like many Filipinas, she worked abroad. Her husband and children stayed behind. She became pregnant and, in fear, hid it. Her family knew nothing. She intended to continue the cover-up once the baby was gone. She’d return home and continue on with life. No one would know of her mistake.
My heart ached each time she came in for check-ups. She feared she would lose her husband if he found out. I began to pray “Lord touch her heart, cause her to keep the baby, and let her husband be forgiving.”
Her daughter was born. Every moment she would lie, staring at her perfect little girl, weeping. I prayed harder.
A mother who delivers at Mercy must breastfeed her child for 24 hours before the social worker comes. In that time she became so conflicted. She left with the baby, needing to think longer. After a few days, we got the call. She called her husband in tears and confessed everything. Not only did he forgive her, he told her “Do not give up the baby, please come home and I will adopt her as my own.” My heart leaped with joy!
I thought of Jesus. How many times I have gone astray. Each time He, as a good and faithful husband, comes for me and buys me back. He loves me despite my sin that pains his heart. Though I had nothing to do with the outcome of her story, I am not the hero, I share it because it has been so impactful to me. I want the Lord to cultivate such love in my heart for those in my life. I don’t want to love others based on their actions or the way they love me. I want to extend the grace God extends towards me to anyone who wrongs me. It is amazing to witness how God works such beautiful redemption stories through birth.
February. What a month.
December and January I was adjusting to a new environment and navigating life with strangers, and a house absent of little ones (first time ever in my life). This month it has become muscle memory to walk the mile to the clinic every morning. I often get lost in my thoughts and somehow arrive, not realizing I crossed the busy intersection. Taking public transportation, bucket showers when the water pressure gives out and responding to familiar Vasaya directions in English have become natural. I lived off of Grapefruit Green Tea with floating gelatin bits through 15-hour shifts. You know, all the normal parts of life…
- Spent 541 hours working in the clinic and 27 hours in classes.
- Taken part in 38 births, either hands-on assisting or charting.
- Done 173 prenatal check-ups, half with a certified midwife, the rest independently with help available if I need it.
- Cared for 36 Postpartum mothers and their babies.
- Visited 7 patients in the local public hospital that were transported for complications.
Palpation is my favorite skill learned. I close my eyes and feel the head and arms, and legs, and back, and little bottom and picture them in my mind. It is beautiful. One of my proudest moments was feeling a term baby that had turned breech. Her mama would have been sent home without trying to turn him and then be transported for a C-Section during labor. I was also asked to recheck a position for a student twice the next day and show her where to find heart tones. That gave me the confidence to continue when I often feel inadequate and unlearned.
Though I am here to learn the physical skills, which are needed and valuable, how much more important to stay in touch with the Lord and concerned for each of the patient’s hearts. Taking time to pray for each of them is rewarding.
I desire to speak all the Vasaya that I need to function well. Language learning has been, as always, a humbling undertaking. There is a high level of vulnerability. Just when I felt comfortable with my Creole knowledge the Lord says, “Nope you aren’t done yet!” I am back to square one. Yet He has infinite knowledge of all languages and can give the words needed if I am only willing to put in the effort and risk looking silly.
Haiti has been on my heart often this month. There is thick darkness over the country right now. Satan is working overtime to put people into fear and depression, threatening the safety and livelihood of their families. Everyone is searching for a solution.
We as Christians know that the solution for this particularly dark moment in Haitian history is the same as it has always been. Only the presence of God has the power to push out the forces of evil and so I pray for revival. I pray for the casting down of the principalities of darkness. I pray for confidence, power, and all-consuming peace in the body of Christ in Haiti. Please keep those things in your prayers.