This is the story of a beautiful soul.
I hope that reading it will bless you as it does me.
We were requested to visit this lady in her tent as she could not come to the clinic.
She had been trapped under debris when the earthquake hit and is now paralyzed from the waist down. She lives in this tent with children of various ages and other extended family.
She gets around in a broken wheelchair that a tall and strong nephew has to push doing "wheelies" while bumping her along the rocky terrain.
Upon entering, the inside of the tent was dark after the brightness of the sun and white stones outside and it took a bit for my eyes to adjust. She was lying as you see her, sweat dripping from her forehead. Silk flowers adorned the walls and hung from the ceiling and small plaques about Jesus lined the tent walls. It was as hot inside as outside. A very small table sat in the corner but I didn't notice any chairs. Her bed was a mattress sitting on cinderblocks. A young woman sat on the ground just inside the tent doorway washing a pile of clothes by hand.
We needed to change her catheter, placed by a team a month ago. She also required an injection of antibiotics. I shooed away the onlooking children so we could have a moment of privacy and they scattered to an area behind a hanging blanket. Her medical care done, we visited for a short while. When she learned we would not be back (ever!), she reached out grabbed my hand, saying she wanted to pray for us, to thank God for us. I was so humbled. She prayed loudly and with confidence from a relationship with God that was well established.
Her smile was radiant!
Her spirit was beautiful!
Her joy was obvious!
I didn't want to leave her side but the van was packed and the waiting team weary from treating over 250 patients in a stifling tent that day.
As I left this special lady, my step was lighter and my soul rejoicing.
I had been blessed beyond measure by this woman who lived with great faith despite the deplorable conditions and serious injuries that made her physically dependent.
Rather than feeling tired and depleted after such a difficult day, I walked out of her tent rejuvenated and uplifted.
I will never forget her.
Some sweet day we will meet in heaven where we will be able to visit for a long time and even take a walk together. (There is no paralysis in heaven.)