What does Ghana look like through the eyes of a Dentist?
I want to express that it is a privilege serving God in the jungles of Ghana, serving with the phenomenal people of Ghana, and working with some of the most inspiring groups of men who help us navigate through some of the most insane and remote areas on the planet. Your prayers are huge to us as we rely on them and Jesus to get us safely to projects GP systems have no clue exist. I want to share a few of the experiences of our past trip.
As always flying into Ghana and seeing it from the air is magnificent. The hostile geography from above looks serene and gentle. We usually go to the local market to load up on few items for the project, however on this day as light was extinguishing, we loaded into the rover and bang, no headlights. First challenge of the week, we have to go back to base camp (Shangri-La) to meet a guy Sammy has called to meet us. Sounds easy, however between us and base camp is about 7 miles of confusion and entropy that would make Plato pause. An hour later we get to the hotel and a man without any tools I saw, fixes the headlights and as per usual The Lord has us on our way, yet another way to let us know Who is in control.
On this trip, as I had my phone taken the second night, I will admit attitude and language were not positive as I had plans to record footage of this trip. I quickly gave it to The Lord and in the morning, while still a bit bummed, The Lord allowed me to let it go, so I did…Romans 8:28 is pouring out like a faucet and its only day 2 for me.
Today was a cool day, saw many kids, one in particular stood out. I noticed a young girl (about 8yrs old) and we made eye contact as she was watching me from a hill in the village. Unknown to me was that I was working on her Mom extracting one of her teeth. A little while later, her Mom brought the young girl to see me. Let me tell you, the look of dread and fear is universal, Roy is not the only one who gives me this look when he comes to see me. As the girl was brought to my chair, tears began to flow. On this day Roy and Jeff happen to be next to me to witness this. Incidentally, I would like to share with you that the love Roy and Jeff have for the people of Ghana and sharing the gospel to these people is inspiring, and unmatched by anything I have seen. There commitment to sharing the gospel is hardcore. We got the tooth out for the girl, and the other universal sign, a smile, was passed from her to me…
I had a very old woman make her way to my chair, and she walked with a stick as high as her. To say she was old would be an understatement. After getting her tooth out, which could have come out in a strong wind, I couldn’t take my eyes off her and asked one of the villagers how old she was. I was told she was over 100yrs old, are you kidding me how tough this woman has to be to survive in Africa for over a 100 years. I want to say that the Lord hammers home that He is in control and that he will not give us more than we can handle.
We had a patient who had known we were going to be there, this morning that patient had reverted to an 1800’s type anesthetic. He consumed a fair amount of alcohol prior to my arrival and apparently had been waiting for a while. He threatened to leave if we didn’t get to him soon. This was classic, and again fear of the unknown leads to some universal methods of coping. We of course extracted his tooth and he left stumbling, yet a happy man…
I have many more stories I will share in the future; however, I again want to thank you all for your prayers and support. Continue to pray for GEM and the stout African team that is invaluable to us. I wish you all could meet Sammy and his team, as they are a crew of modern day Paul’s. Our Lord is doing a wonderful and huge work in Ghana through Roy and Jeff and all the others. Incidentally, Nick and James joined us on this trip and were awesome. Roy and Jeff would not like me to say this but in this rubrics cube of chaos, their commitment and desire to get the gospel out to the people of Ghana is a beautiful thing to witness…God Bless, and keep us and the people of Ghana in your prayers.