Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Gertrude....

Yesterday I had the great honor of spending most of the day with a sweet 7 year old girl named Gertrude. Unfortunately the majority of our time together was spent at a local clinic in downtown Lusaka. Gertrude looks like she’s about 4 years old...her tiny frame and dark, sunken eyes will absolutely break your heart. She is literally skin and bones and her breathing is extremely heavy.

Sweet Gertrude...

When she got off of the bus on Tuesday morning at Camp LIFE, we knew we had to get her to the clinic quickly. Her mom and 14 month old baby brother were on the bus as well (it is not normal for parents and young siblings to come to camp, but now I know that God was at work here). I, along with 2 other Zambian Family Legacy employees, took Gertrude, her 24 year old mom, Dina, and her baby brother, Peter, to Tiny Tim and Friends, a clinic that treats women and children free of charge.

The entrance to Tiny Tim and Friends...
All 3 of their HIV tests came out positive. According to Dina, Gertrude has been sick since she was 2 years old and she has had a horrible cough for the past 3 years. Gertrude will be tested for Tuberculosis next week…that the doctor said that she most likely has. My heart is so burdened for this child and her family. The Lord lead me to Psalm 91 yesterday afternoon after we returned to camp from the clinic...it is such an amazing passage of scripture that has brought me great hope for this family. The entire passage is amazing, but I’m fervently praying over the last 3 versus for Gertrude…

“Because Gertrude holds fast to me in love, I will deliver her; I will protect her, because she knows my name. When she calls to me, I will answer her; I will be with her in trouble; I will rescue her and honor her. With long life I will satisfy her and show her my salvation.” Psalm 91: 14-16

If you have a spare moment today, please pray for the following…

1) That Gertrude would come to know the Lord this week at camp. This is her first time to come to Camp LIFE, so it will probably be her first time to hear the gospel.

2) That the JOY of the LORD will be her STRENGTH! Joy just happens to be the theme for camp this year. Pray that joy will consume her and bring her great hope.

3) That she, along with the rest of her family, will get to start ARV’s very soon. ARV is a treatment for HIV.

4) That Gertrude’s father’s heart would be softened by the spirit. Her father is in denial about their health….we found out that Dina was on ARV’s before, but he made her stop them because he didn’t want to deal with stigma that comes with AIDS. A couple of FLMI Zambian staff members visited the father last night and he agreed to get tested along with their middle child, which is a huge praise! Pray that he will follow through with his word and agree for his family to take the ARV's.

Gertrude and I did some coloring while we were waiting at the clinic....she LOVED coloring!
A new friend we made while waiting. Grace loved coloring too!
Thanks for reading this lengthy post and for your prayers! I'll be sure to keep my blog updated with how Gertrude and her family are doing.


3 comments:

Elizabeth said...

Mindy, I have prayed for God to open the eyes of Gertrude's heart so she can see her King and respond this week... I will keep her in my prayers and her family as well. Love you and thankful to be able to pray with y'all during this time!

KRIS.10.K said...

Mindy - I came across your blog a while back and have been able to follow along as you prepare for Zambia. I have never been so touched by a blog as I have been in just the past week that you have been there. Thank you for all of your updates, and for sharing God's Word with His children in Zambia!!!! I will keep you, the kids, and Camp Life in my prayers!!

I want to go to Zambia!! Enjoy this journey!

Elyse said...

I'm catching up from being out of town. We are definitely praying for sweet Gertrude, Junior, and their parents. Keep us posted. I'm loving being able to see God's hand at work in Zambia from across the country. Praying for you and the kids at Camp Life.