We can’t believe that it’s already been a month since we moved to Mexico! Since landing in the Copper Canyon, Willy and I finished the construction of our house, began a medical resident academic program, and established a malnutrition program at the hospital. We’ve even gained valuable new skill sets like sprinting through a thunderstorm to snatch laundry off the clothesline, dodging gas oven explosions, and refining the many culinary interpretations of beans and rice.
You may have heard the phrase “begin with the end in mind” as it refers to leadership, entrepreneurship, sports competition, or personal productivity. Though we’ve only been in Mexico for a month, we’re already thinking about the end goal- using medicine as a vehicle to share the Gospel with the Tarahumara people. Having a concrete vision helps us choose the important over the urgent and focus on the eternal as we practice medicine.
In college, I once heard a statement that stunned me – as doctors we may work tirelessly to ensure that our patients are perfectly healthy, then send them away spiritually bankrupt. This is a sobering thought, being that we encounter a lot of death in Mexico. Just this week, a critically ill Tarahumara woman named Luciana arrived at the hospital. She had a dead segment of bowel and Willy took her for emergency surgery. Our hospital staff worked through the night to stabilize her with the limited resources available to them. In the morning, Willy stood by her bed with his arm around her husband as she passed into eternity.
As Christian physicians, we know that death is not the greatest battle. Our family is not in Mexico because we believe that we can heal every sick patient, feed every child, or free every person from poverty or illiteracy, though we work diligently toward those goals. Our “end goal” is to share the great hope of Jesus. We pray that even in the midst of need, suffering and death the Tarahumara people can have a hope of heaven.
For Willy and I, “beginning with the end in mind” also means investing in learning the Tarahumara language so that we can converse with our patients (though this sometimes feels insurmountable, we’re making good progress!) Another goal is to mentor and train Mexican physicians who have the potential to significantly impact their country. We appreciate your prayers for these endeavors.
One thing we’ve learned is that no matter how remote the location, God knows our end from the beginning and is taking care of us. He will take care of you on your mission field too, wherever that may be.