Monthly Archives: February 2016

February 2016 Prayer Points

IMG_6729Here are some ways you can be praying for the ministry of Hope Matters this month:

  • We are thrilled to share with you that this month our shipping container of hospital equipment and medical supplies was released from customs and transported to our property in Musembe. This project has been over two-years in the making and we are thrilled to start unpacking and putting the many items to work! Give thanks with us for the safe arrival of this container and everything it holds!
  • The Kiprop family was blessed with a productive trip to the USA in Dec/Jan. They arrived safely back in Kenya on February 5th and hit the ground running.¬†Praise God for their¬†safe return to Africa. Pray for them to get an opportunity for rest and renewal of body, mind, spirit, and marriage as they have been going non-stop for quite some time now.
  • The Village of Hope Medical Centre is expanding with the addition of another room to the medical centre. We are praising God for this amazing opportunity to expand our services. And we ask that you would pray with us for more funding as more space and greater service opportunities also come with increased expenses and a need for more staff members.
  • We desire to commit all of our plans to the LORD and to follow his leading as we move forward in 2016. Pray with us for daily wisdom and direction in everything we say and do. We are excited about the possibilities of expansion in the ministry this year and look forward to what God has in store!

When Physical Hope is Gone

IMG_8904Shortly before we left for our recent visit to the USA, I was asked to see a friend’s wife as a patient. I knew she had been sick for some time, but I really didn’t know the details. As I sat down with her in the treatment room, I could see that the situation was serious. I knew she had seen other medical providers and I asked to see the records. The more I read of her file, the more hopeless the situation felt. I realized that she wasn’t just sick, she was dying. Our eyes met. I asked if any of the doctors had explained the reports to the husband and wife. They nodded yes. “We know she is really, really, sick.”

I paused. I was a bit overwhelmed. This wasn’t a patient I was just meeting as a medical provider. This was my friend’s wife. I’d worked with him for a number of years on health projects in the local public schools. This was so much more personal. I was confused. They had been to some of the best medical institutions in Kenya. Every test had been done. Every possible treatment was already in play. What more could I do?

I humbly asked how they felt I could help. In that quiet moment the pain in the eyes of this husband and wife was oh so evident. The husband’s eyes met mine “You can pray” he said. They had come to see not a miraculous medical provider, but a friend who could take their hands and pray. And in that moment I was reminded, this is why hope matters. This is why we exist as an organization. There are times when I do not have anything that I can physically offer a patient; times when the only hope I can offer is actually the greatest hope that ever was. The hope of eternal life. The hope of healing of heart, mind, and spirit. The hope of knowing that one day, when this life is over, we will meet again. And when we meet on that day, there will be no gasping breaths, no pain, no fear, no shadows. And so we prayed. We held hands in that little treatment room and went into the throne-room together.

While in the USA I received word that she had died. We missed her funeral by just a week. Monday morning as I sat down in my office to organize my plans for the week, I glanced up and saw my friend standing in the doorway. He sat down with William and I to share a cup of chai. We began to talk about what it means to say goodbye. To mourn. To grieve. He shared with us some of the platitudes he has recently heard “We loved her, but God loved her more.” Things like: “Now is the time to pull up your socks and be strong.” or “God has a greater plan in this.” Right now to him those are empty words that do nothing to acknowledge his huge loss or the part of him that feels like it died when he put his wife in the ground. And so we did not offer platitudes. We listened. We reminded him that David in the Bible got angry sometimes and that, that is actually, perfectly, okay. That his loss is massive and is worth mourning over. And once again we prayed together. It wasn’t what I had imagined for my Monday morning. But I wouldn’t have started my week any other way. It was a reminder that I’m here because hope matters, it really does.