We have 250 medical professionals serving in SIM. We recently surveyed some of them. We asked each one to share a highlight of their ministry. Here are some of their responses. One bullet point per person:
- The opportunity to develop relationships with Muslims as patients, staff and colleagues
- Working with vesicovaginal fistula patients (VVF). The majority of our work is in this area, and we are seeing huge life changes as well as large numbers of people choosing to place their faith in Christ through VVF ministries as well. A close second – working with the family practice residents (all nationals)
- Proclaiming the gospel as the Spirit enables
- Discipling men that have initially resisted studying the Bible, but later study it voraciously
- Meeting desperate physical needs, training interns, and the joy of caring for patients. Answers to prayer by the Lord sending a doctor who spends part of his time doing rural medicine outreach in areas of the country where there has been no gospel witness (using the hospital as a base)
- The impact I can make here, compared to what it would be in the U.S. To see individual lives touched each week; to see the sickest of the HIV and TB patients receive compassionate care and actually survive. To see a wider impact that we can have in the area together with the Ministry of Health. To see the institution built up; it is a unique privilege and joy to see every piece of the puzzle as it comes together, to know the story of each item supplied, the input of each individual/church/organization, and so on (the reward of effective leadership in administration)
- Enjoyed working with the kids ministry
- That we were able to go to a closed area of this country (highly secure country); and that they are known as Christians who show compassion. That we can have a significant impact on health education among local doctors. That we can create avenues for ministry among local believers
- We are excited to see how the younger generation of church leadership is responding to the AIDS teaching, applying it and seeing people’s lives transformed. At an HIV camp they see how the truth of God’s word gives them a future and a hope. Also they are surprised how palliative care has opened doors to sharing Christ
- It is a joy to help dental students get a better level of training as well as discipling them or leading them to Christ. It is also a blessing to work side by side with Bible translation team and see God’s word changing lives and strengthening the church. The work of the mission hospital has given improved dental health of the young people, especially children, who are taught about dental hygiene early
- To see the replication of the dental training, not only the medical teaching but the spiritual.
- Enjoyed the team dynamics
- In the beginning it was a highlight taking care of patients; now I am more in an administrative role and the highlight is working closely with two Nigerians who are mentors to me. Loved the six months of teaching I did with the nursing staff
- Although I am not now on the field, many of the graduates I trained are now serving the poor and being Christ to those who do not yet know HIM. Even one man who was not a believer spends one day a week doing a clinic where he is not paid
- Direct patient care and teaching
- Openness and willingness of patients to hear the gospel. Growth and development of staff
- Developing relationships with hospital staff
- One of the big highlights is to have been in the same place for 35 years and have relationships with people over a long time. I have been able to follow some people through many stages of their lives. As a doctor it is a highlight when you can come into someone’s life and connect with them and make Christ real to them. It has been rewarding to see how much has changed in many areas: AIDS epidemic, malnutrition, malaria, measles and many other diseases have improved with medical care and education. Lately I have been much more aware of the need to share Christ.
- Sharing the gospel in our particular context of medical mission. It’s neat working in a situation where that is possible, working in conjunction with local evangelists. Lots of natural opportunity to do this. Another highlight is seeing sick folks get better through your intervention (and by contrast a low light is seeing folks die in spite of — or even worse — because of your intervention!)
Do you see why we have joy in medical missions?