Thursday, May 27, 2010

Art evangelism in India.

This took place in India, sometime in March 2010...
Written by Orissa Mora-Kent in the Philippines May 27, before returning to Perth, AU.

The heart of the Birth Attendant School is to see God’s Kingdom extended to women and children everywhere. We believe we can see His kingdom come in many ways, whether that is comforting a woman in labor, catching babies and praying over them or teaching about women’s reproductive systems under a mango tree. His kingdom is real, and it comes when women who have been considered not valuable enough to educate are given value through a teaching about their bodies or shown love and respect during the process of giving birth instead of being slapped and yelled at. Kindness sends a powerful message that the one receiving is valuable, made in the image of God and loved unconditionally.

As students of the BAS we also make intercession a regular part of our lives. Waiting on God and hearing Him speak is what stirs us up to take action and live lives that are obedient to His will and purposes.

One particular day God spoke some exciting things for us to do using our gifts of art and storytelling as tools to draw people in to hear about Jesus. And so it was on this particular day that we left our blue hospital uniforms at home and donned our colorful Indian punjabis to have an adventure day with God.

God spoke to us about “filling up the buckets“,
We got the idea from that to draw a picture of an Indian woman filling up buckets at a well. Someone drew the picture and we set out for the park. Settling down on the grass we spread out our art supplies and started doodling away..
Soon the sight of us caught the attention of two young Indian women. They giggled, pointed, smiled and hesitated to pass us by.. one pulling on the other’s arm to stop. We called out to them that they were welcome to come and sit with us. Excitedly they hurried over and sat down - becoming our fast friends. Having prepared for this moment beforehand in prayer we knew it was not a coincidence that these girls so easily began to share with us the personal details of their lives. The girls offered me a drink from their water bottle, which as you will later see, is very significant. Soon an opportunity presented itself for me to take out the picture that was drawn earlier of the Indian woman filling up buckets at a well. I asked the girls, “Do you want to hear a story?” they said yes.

I told the story of the Samaritan woman who met a man named Jesus at a well a long time ago. I was able to refer back to the water they had offered me earlier, and say how even though it had quenched my thirst temporarily, I was naturally thirsty again and I would always be thirsty for that kind of water. Just like that Samaritan woman. I told them about the water Jesus had offered to her and wanted to offer to them too. Living water, that if you drink of you will never thirst again. The story amazed them and they said.. “All of this, from one picture?” “Wow.”

They stayed and drew pictures with us, and we were able to continue speaking truth into their lives. In the end we prayed with both of them. One of the girls, touched by a picture that was drawn of her dancing with Jesus, exclaimed with obvious joy, “This is really from Jesus, I know it, because I love dancing!” All I can say is, praise God! It was an unforgettable day. We still have contact with these girls from India and our prayer for them is that they will choose to drink the water Jesus offers to us all freely.


Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sudden rainfall brings refreshment.

Yesterday I spent my last day in the labour room of the hospital in India.

It was a nice calm day.. I spent it sitting by a labouring woman's bedside talking to her through signing because neither of us understood each other's languages. She did not deliver her baby during my shift so I was not able to assist, but we did have a nice day together.. laughing, and feeling her baby kick, and listening to the baby's heartbeat. It is so nice to share those moments with women as they prepare to become mothers :)

It started raining hard as we were leaving the hospital so we all got soaking wet as we ran to the street from our building - I stood by the curb trying to catch a rickshaw (transport) in the pouring rain just laughing, so happy because I love rain and laughing because I was getting SO wet due to the fact that the rickshaw drivers were being difficult with the price; I kept getting wetter as we couldn't come to an agreement.. Then finally one man agreed to a fair price to take us home - and we gratefully squished ourselves into his rickshaw dripping water everywhere!!
I snapped a couple pictures as we drove through the streets as they were quickly filling up with water that was ankle deep.

I leave India on Good Friday and will arrive in the Philippines to continue studying antenatal, labour and delivery, and postnatal care for pregnant women.
Thank you to everyone who has been praying for our team!!

I snapped this on the drive home from my last day at the hospital -
I am leaving India in two days.
Someday I hope to come back to India...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Fear of the Lord

Hello to all,

Yesterday I had a great day in the hospital -
I felt so happy being there, and being able to help.
I will miss India so much when I leave in two weeks to head to the Philippines with my team.
Being here has been a fulfillment of a long held-in-my-heart desire..
This place has been intense in so many ways, and being in the hospital has given me a clear picture of what India is like.

I attended a birth on Tuesday for a first time mother who delivered a beautiful baby boy in the early afternoon.

I cut my first episiotomy for this mom and then I did the suturing too.

Today she went home with her family and newborn son, and as I passed them all in the hall she smiled at me for the first time! I think she was so happy to be leaving the hospital!

Yesterday was an interesting day..
I was in the post-natal ward (that is where women go after they deliver) following up with the mom whose birth I had attended on Tuesday - and while I was there I noticed another woman laying on a bed in the corner of the ward near the wall..
she smiled at me and then I felt the Holy Spirit prompt me to go over and meet her; so I walked over to her bed and said "Hi".
Surprisingly she spoke very good English and started telling me immediately about the pain she was feeling. After talking with her for awhile, and reading her case notes - I decided to get permission from the doctor on duty to examine this woman more thoroughly. I was concerned that the episiotomy she had may be infected. I got permission to examine the patient and this is how I discovered that the stitches were actually loose and some were coming out; there was a gaping bit where the skin wasn't connecting. It was opening up even into the muscle. I reported this to the sister on duty in the ward who then gave me permission to bring the woman downstairs for re-suturing. I brought her down with the daima and was able to clean the wound and stitch it back together. Then I taught the mom how to clean the wound with clean salt water twice daily to prevent infection.
This experience is important to me because God helped me to find her.. in a busy room full of women, alone I would not have known that she needed immediate attention, but with God helping us, my team and I are learning that fear of the Lord is an essential principle that we must build our midwifery practice upon. Being sensitive to obey the Holy Spirit's prompting; we will be better midwives.

I am thankful that God used me to help that woman and teach me a valuable lesson about hearing His voice in the hospital. God is able to see what I cannot -

Today I checked up on the woman who needed the re-suturing and she is doing much better. She said her pain is less today and she would be going home soon. Then I got to share God's love with her in a story about the lost sheep and the Good Shepherd - who I introduced later on in the story as Jesus, God's son. I told her how much Jesus loves her, and how valuable she is to God.

Thank you all for all your prayers. God is good.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Crying with them.

It is uncomfortable to write this. But I want to share it with you, because it is real. Some days are harder than others. Some days don't call for smiling and hugging to celebrate life -

On these days, there are deep moments of connecting with strangers in desperate grasps and holding on when all you can do is cry with them.

A child of 12 years old was brought into our ward after having been attacked and raped by three men. She was so small. The police came in to get a report, sitting by her bed, asking her questions.. she lay there still, answering them without looking at them. We wanted to scoop her up into our arms and speak comfort to her. I wanted to hold her, but some family was there by her, around the bed. So we could only watch from a distance. Her hair was stiff and dirty, so were her clothes and she wore no shoes on her feet. She was wearing a green dress and gold arms bracelets.
At one point, one of the women had to carry the little girl to the toilet because she was in too much pain to walk by herself.

At the same time,
on the other side of the room a young woman laboured to give birth to her second child. Her first one had been a stillborn.

We walked over to her, where her mother was speaking to her -- encouraging her to keep going, keep pushing. We saw two feet come out first.. breech babies usually deliver themselves.
So we waited -

Then the madam (doctor) came over..
The breech wasn't delivering by itself this time. It was a little stuck. So she began to pull and coax the baby's head out. The three of us stood around the bed, clutching the mama's hands, and the grandmothers hands in ours..
Those were tense moments, of praying and waiting to see --
Then the baby came out, lifeless.
A baby girl of 28 weeks.
The grandmother wept in our arms. The mother wept on the table. They held our hands and we cried with them.

"God is near to the brokenhearted." We prayed for His comfort to draw them close together. Hope will rise -

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

learning an important skill

A woman tore very badly giving birth today. My teacher and I sutured together - I was able to suture 10 stitches. Then we prayed that the sutures would hold up nicely while she is healing. She gave birth to a beautiful baby boy that she named Aneel. He is her first child, she is 18 years old.

- Orissa