Why, God? It is a common question surrounding the misfortunes of life—illness, accidents, disappointments, betrayals and any difficulties and obstacles confronted during the course of our journey. Especially, when we are attempting to do good things, it feels that “God should have my back,” as we commonly express between friends.
“Why, God?” was the first thought that arose when the medical and dental team from CMDA arrived in the Dominican Republic. The preparations had begun months before—the team signed up with passports and QR codes for entry visas, licensed doctors and dentists recruited to accompany students from the San Antonio medical center, 11 bright red trunks of supplies carefully packed and inventoried, sites of clinics identified and reserved, transportation, translators, rooming assignments and the ALL-IMPORTANT Dominican health department permission signed and in-hand. Finally, the last item was checked off of the seemingly endless list of details, and the team boarded their flights.
“My ways are higher than your ways,” God reminds us and reminds us again and again, throughout our lives. The team arrived safely in the DR, but as they passed through customs, all 11 trunks of medical and dental supplies were confiscated! In spite of the official legal document giving permission for these clinics, they were informed that now there were NEW regulations, and the trunks would be held until they left the country again. Why, God?
Frustrated, disappointed and anxious, the team tried to adjust, and reconsider, “What can we accomplish without our supplies?” Prayer was the first and the only recourse. For many, although faith was an untested resource, they earnestly asked God to intervene. Disheartened, they began their first clinics on Monday morning, determined to do what they could.
For STCH Ministries for over 70 years, God has answered countless prayers in the mission of “healing hearts and sharing hope with children and families.” He is sovereign. God is not taken by surprise by life’s events. He is always faithful. Although His ways are not our ways, He will always make A WAY.
STCH Ministries is grateful for the friends God has provided through the last 16 years of ministry in the Dominican Republic. As texts, emails and phone calls flew over the ocean, representatives from our staff returned to the customs agents to try and plead our case. At first there was no change, but as the individuals with the necessary authority were contacted, the staff suddenly received a message, “Come and get your supplies!” By the end of the week, over 652 patients were seen and received medical and dental attention.
“Why, God?” is never fully understood from this earth-bound perspective. But through these circumstances, we can be sure of some of His purposes; the power of prayer, the reality that God knows us, and hears us was affirmed; important connections were formed through our Dominican friends; faith-building occurred in many hearts. Above all else, God received the glory and affirmed to all of us that He is sovereign and He is in control.