Well, we have less than 15 hours before we depart Soddo Christian Hospital for home. I have had the privilege to serve with the most amazing group of people I could ever imagine. In God’s infinite wisdom Heassembled an incredible team that has served the missionaries and this hospital in the most sincere and humble fashion.
This team heard God’s voice and obediently followed His call to leave their homes, their children, their spouses as well as all the safety and comfort known to them. They followed God’s leading to go half way around the world to a place that is impossible to describe.
Though each member of the team came with a sense of focusing on a particular area of service, they were willing to help in whatever area of service was needed. Our T-Shirts said, “SERVE SODDO”, and that is what the team did. It didn’t matter in what they did. They just jumped in to serve…doing whatever, whenever.
Tony, who also co-lead the team with me, and Bud, came primarily to use their incredible skills to assist in leading the many projects needed throughout the compound. They began by focusing on fixing the badly needed generator,which supplies electricity to the hospital and missionary residences when the municipal electricity cuts out (about 50% of the time). However, they also went on rounds with the physicians, observing and ministering to the patients as well as develop a close relationship with their new Ethiopian friend Temesgen, the compounds Electrician. Last night Bud, led the team in prayer, laying hands on Temesgen praying down God’s goodness and blessing on him.
Others on the team came to Soddo with a burden to pray. Much of the team spent hours praying for patients, praying for missionaries and for praying each other. We heard many say that Lakeland is a church that prays. This was so evident throughout out time here.
Though we prayed much, we also served in digging holes, painting poles and cementing lights in place. We fixed badly broken doors in OR, which now help prevent germs from entering into the surgical rooms, as well as installed toilet seats.
Though Lisa spent much of the week in prayer for patients and hospital staff using her tremendously to pray life, faith and healing into dozens, she also helped Kym hang posterswith scripture verses throughout the hospital as well as along with Susan, set up a spreadsheet organizing oxygen, masks and tubing for the hospital. On top of all this, Lisa saw to the constant updating of our blog.
This morning, Sue, Kym, Susan and I spent it praying throughout the hospital. We prayed for God’s healing and comfort and ministered to many. In fact, we just came from ICU praying for a young girl and her mom and dad. This little girl was screaming in pain from extensive burns over much of her body. We just learned the girl is resting peaceably.
Though we saw Josh, a physician, assist in rounds and surgery, formally a children’s pastor, he also spent time entertaining the children of missionaries, doing prayer walks in and outside the compound, fixing doors or installing badly needed toilet seats.
Though Susan, a surgical nurse came to use her nursing skills, which she did during the week, also spent time praying healing over many. God not only used her nursing skills, but is also used her gift of healing.
My incredible wife, Sue came to pray, serve and support me in anyway possible. She has prayed, spoke words of encouragement and prophesy to the many she ministered to. On the other hand, she spent a day scrubbed in assisting in surgery, (no, she is not a nurse). She also organized times with missionaries, organized meals, painted, baked and cooked. This afternoon we will be meeting with Alison, who has started a business producing badly needed washable, reusable sanitary napkins. These are for girls in Ethiopia who are not able to attend school during times of menstruation. We are helping her with a marketing and sales strategy for her business.
Ken Amstutz, Pastor Josh’s father and president of the foundation overseeing SCH, has been going non-stop. Ken has been in meetings with his executive team, coordinating strategy sessions, spending hours encouraging the missionaries, as well as jumping in and helping when able.Ken has been instrumental helping to launch Lakeland’s first, of what I believe will be many trips to Africa.
As I said earlier, I have had the privilege to serve with the most amazing group of people I could ever imagine. God has assembled a humble and spirit-filled team that has served well the missionaries, patients and hospital staff.
Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
There is no doubt in my mind that God sent TEAM SODDO to do the good works which God prepared in advance for us to do. No matter what the task, TEAM SODDO was there, ready to serve.
P.S. Today the generator powering the hospital campus has over-heated due to a coolant leak. At this point the electricity has been out for 7 hours. As I write this, Bud is working feverishly trying to restore to power desperately needed at the hospital. As we have seen throughout the week, as God has used Team Soddo over and over again doing His work, He will use Bud again and his amazing gifts to restore Soddo’s electricity.
P.P.S. Electricity just came on! Thank you, Bud. Thank you Team. Thank you, Soddo Christian Hospital…and thank you, Lord for allowing us the opportunity to serve You and Your precious people in Ethiopia.