In the Face of the Storm
written by Lauren and Derek Webber, serving in Chogoria, Kenya (shared from their blog, Webbers in Africa)
MedSend grant recipient Derek Webber is a Physician Assistant serving in Chogoria, Kenya. He and his wife, Lauren have served in Kenya since 2016. In his role at PCEA Chogoria Hospital, Derek (back row, far left) serves alongside several other MedSend grant recipients, including Dr. Eli Horn (back row, center), and Dr. Haley Combs (back row, second from right).
Do you see these people right here? They are my heroes, along with the throngs of workers who stand behind them at the PCEA Chogoria Mission Hospital. In the wake of the tsunami whose full weight will smash upon our shores over the next few months, they stand ready. In the face of immense challenges– corruption, limited resources, anxiety amongst staff, fear in the community, they stand at the gates prepared.
Preparedness. An ideal that we like to hold tightly to when crisis approaches. What does that mean, anyway? Having enough physical resources? Having enough human resources? Doing enough training? Here in rural Kenya (which is far better than some other places), we live every day with the reality of limited resources. We grapple all the time with the ethical dilemma of who gets life-saving treatment and who doesn’t. Each day we face immense financial challenges that threaten the livelihood of many in our community and the realization that today’s troubles far exceed our physical capacity to carry. And yet, these people press on. Why? Because they are courageous and prepared in their heart. In the face of a global pandemic, they stand firm in their resolve to care for the vulnerable, whatever the cost.
So, do we negate preparedness altogether, knowing that the resources we have will never be enough? Of course not. These people have been tirelessly leading education efforts across the hospital for weeks now. They have been courageously meeting with county officers who publicly announce an abundance of supplies and then give nothing to our institution, their frontline soldiers. They have been fighting for justice and for the protection of their workers. They have begun manufacturing their own PPE, equipping their own isolation ward, and still managing to see patients that walk through the doors of the hospital. They are pushing back fear and refusing to relinquish faith. Like David walking to the stream, they are picking five smooth stones and heading out to fight Goliath. Their hearts are prepared because they know that the battle is not their own. They see Pharaoh’s chariots approaching from the rear, the Red Sea in front of them, and they are courageously heading toward the water, knowing that God will show up. He always has, He always will. Therefore, they press on with the assurance that He is a strong anchor in the midst of the storm. With the psalmist they say…
and for the many more they represent?
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