This was written by a "tent-making "missionary colleague in this region, Heidi Gil, who lives about a day’s travel from us.
"Then, suddenly, the Secretary of Health of Porto de Moz (a day’s travel away) offered me my old position. The blessing is that they will pay me almost twice what they did before, and I’ll only have to work 1 week per month! And get this: one thing that impressed the health department is the voluntary involvement of an American doctor (who is with the Xingu Mission in Porto). The Secretary told me that he prays over his patients in the exam room (she stuck out her hand emphatically to imply the laying on of hands) in such a way that people feel loved on and cared for. Obviously, the health system in Porto is desperate for qualified professionals and open to an invasion from heaven, so I’m on it! Plus, I’ll be able to help out at our old church while I’m there (YAY!), so it’ll be like going on a missions trip once a month."
God uses us in so many ways. In no way did I pray for people to make an impression on the health administrator of the city. But she has been impressed, likely because the people prayed for have received it so favorably and benefited. The outcome for this could have been so different. A couple of complaints and this same health leader labels me a quack, a flake or a religious fanatic, reports me to the feds, and I’m booted from the country.
Our favor in other’s eyes is so very little in our control. This could have gone either way. God could have instead used disfavor in this situation and called me to be faithful in suffering and responding well to adversity. God determines the time and place for our favor or disfavor. He uses both as we remain faithful to Him either way.
I was compelled to work for the Health System of Porto de Moz. There was risk, opposition, reasonable concern expressed for these potential negative consequences, and so many reasons to not participate in this health work. But I was compelled in a manner that I could respond in no other way. Jeremiah and many others have expressed something similar. Why does God compel us to do certain things? Often we don’t know; sometimes we are able to understand. It is important that we recognize the compelling hand of God and obey. Typically the benefit from this manner of call occurs in someone else’s life, rather than our own. This is the way of the Kingdom. Several thousand people were seen by a doctor that otherwise wouldn’t have been, many saw God answer my request of Him to touch them, many witnessed for the first time the beauty of one person praying for another in what is typically a completely secular setting, leaders were influenced, and another missionary was given opportunity to infiltrate the health system. All resulting from a crisis in the local health care system. How He still loves creating something beautiful out of nothing.
We give thanks in all things, not because of favorable circumstances, but because our Father called us and invited us to participate in His work.