This is part 3 in a series of posts about our recent trip to Ethiopia. Here is part 2 if you missed it…
Monday, February 17th
We feel good. Jetlag is easing and as we head out of Addis, we stop by the airport to happily receive the last of our lost luggage containing important training materials, donations, and supplies.
After an amazing traditional Ethiopian lunch of beef tibs and injera, Meseret, the Executive Director of Living Hope Maternity Home , takes us to the local government Hospital to meet Dr. Henok. Dr. Henok is an enthusiastic GP who serves in many fields at the hospital, including pediatrics, general medicine, non-complicated surgery, and maternal care.
We have no idea what to expect, but we come to relax a bit as Dr. Henok warmly welcomes each of us with a handshake, and then walks us to his humble home which is located on the hospital compound. We meet his wife and son, he beams with pride and joy.
Dr. Henok takes the time to hear our presentation regarding the work of Delivering Hope. As we share, his body language is genuine and he listens intently. He is deeply bothered by the number of women and newborns who die here, at his hospital, each and every week. He knows something must be done.
He thanks us several times for caring and for our bringing our vision to Ethiopia… for recognizing what he calls a “spiritual battle”… a battle for life.
As our time progresses, we learn that he is not just interested, he is excited. He promises to fully support our work in any way possible, for he knows that these women, newborns, families…his hospital and his country… need this help. They need someone to care and to “do”.
He shares more. We listen. We learn.
Then… another veil is lifted, another epiphany…
This battle for life is real, and we have just stepped into it the middle of a war. This war has been raging since the fall of man…
The one who seeks to kill and destroy vs. a God who creates life.
As we begin to step onto this battlefield, I want so badly to be wise and careful and safe, and to successfully avoid pain. But then I realize that if this war is real, then like all other wars, it is not only going to be dangerous, hard, and sacrificial, but also painful.
I don’t like pain…
I think of the soldiers who protect us now, whom we respect immensely for their sacrifice and courage. And then I begin to envision us. We don’t look like them, yet, the similarities amaze me. Us… this rag tag group of women who are trying oh so hard to be brave and fearless. We believe in truth and justice, we have been given battle plans and methods, our loyalty lies with our commander and our “homeland”, and we are willing to fight for the lives who are falling victim to the wrath of one who destroys and kills.
And then I realize how romantic this all is when you are watching in on the screen or reading about it in a book. During war movies, I often tell my husband that I would make a terrible soldier because I’m pretty sure I would panic and retreat at the start of any battle.
But now its here… the battle, our battle, my battle, God’s battle. And I’m not running. In fact, I am joining forces with the sisters next to me, and we are charging together. And we are not alone.
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
Kameron and the DHI team