One of the most important lessons that I've learned through dealing with this leg wound is it would have been nearly impossible for me to get the proper care had I been a person in a vulnerable position. I was able to fight for myself, but even so, I didn't receive the optimal care. I also had a network of people to help me along the way. People that encouraged me to keep fighting, family and friends that stepped up to care for my children while I ran around to multiple doctor and business offices in order to make sure it happened. There's no doubt in my mind that I would have ended up with a serious infection had I just waited around to be seen by my insurance company's time table. Weeks after getting into the doctor it wasn't completely healed. I had to go see a doctor while in Cambodia- but not just any doctor- a doctor that the people I was with knew and trusted. I was able to get the care I needed in a foreign, developing nation because of the fact that I had the right connections.
I have people all around me that will stand up and stand in for me. I think I've spent my whole life taking that for granted.
Love truly does empower.
The more I learn, the more I see the significance in that. We need to be advocates for each other and for other people. We have to stand in the gaps for the most vulnerable in our communities. We have to fight for those that don't have a voice. I think that's a big part of building up our churches in a healthy way. It's not through providing the best programs or music that will attract the masses, but literally by just serving.
A couple nights before I left for Asia, a small group of my girl friends got together at Starbuck's to just hang out, offer me their support, and pray over me. We talked about my fears and excitement. They understood how it might be difficult coming back home. They promised to listen and encourage me through the wide spectrum of emotions they knew I would encounter. They imagined I would feel angry at times returning to our culture. They were right. They knew my passion and drive would increase. No doubt. And they told me they'd journey with me. I'm trusting them to follow through; I know they will.
These are the types of communities that we have to cultivate. Ones that support and encourage each other to act, to come alongside each other, provide support in the weak moments, and bounce ideas off of each other. I want others to experience the joy I've had through having people to walk through life with. Good friends and family are such a gift. I look forward to coming up with ways with them to share that love with those who have not had such experiences.
It's go time, friends.