Saturday, December 2, 2017

A God Connection!

Have you ever had one of those days where everything seems to go wrong?

While in Sri Lanka we had one of those days! It started with us waking up at 2:30 a.m. to take Cyndy to the airport for her return trip home.

Later that morning we spent time sorting, packing and taking inventory of eyeglasses for our upcoming clinic.  Sounds simple, but it's a lot of work in a small room with no A/C.  After a couple of hours Pat and I were drenched in sweat.  We were looking forward to heading back to our hotel room, taking a shower and getting some rest.  Pat went into the bathroom and nearly slipped in a sea of water covering the floor!  

Now, this is not a fancy hotel;  a little lower then a Motel 6, (sorry to all of you that stay there, no disrespect).  Many times people think we stay at hotels suited for Westerners - but we stay where our own personal criteria is that one of the rooms has to be clean. We've noticed in our travels over the years is that if the bedroom is clean, then the bathroom is dirty and vice versa.

I could see the water was coming out from the wall and immediately knew - we have a broken pipe and this was going to be a problem.

The hotel clerk spoke reasonable English, so I went downstairs to let him know what was happening. His response was to send a porter to squeegee the floor.  Three minutes later our swimming pool was back, so down I went to the hotel clerk, with Pat's parting words ringing in my ears, "Remember you're a Christian, so act Christlike!"  I asked nicely for us to be moved to another room, but was informed that wouldn't be possible because  the air conditioners in the two other A/C rooms, were broken.  To stay in a non-A/C room would be unbearable as the humidity in Sri Lanka is very high!

What to do?  We let our contacts know about our predicament and went right to the Internet to find a reasonably price hotel nearby.   Now, Pat and I have learned through the years that 'God's got it'. We know He is in control, even when everything in our lives seems out of control. What came about because of a broken water pipe, was more then we could imagine.  

As we searched for a different place to stay, the Lord led us to a studio apartment attached to a private residence.  The apartment has it's own kitchen, a washer and dryer; and the property is right on the shores of Lake Bolgoda.  This mean we could prepare our own meals, no more laundry in the bathroom sink and wonderful peace and quiet. (Note: we love trains, but not when they are rambling by at 4:00 am to wake us up.)   Yeah God!  And all of this was just a little bit more then we were paying for at our other hotel.

But wait, this was not the connection.  Here is where the Lord really showed off.  The family we rented the apartment from 'just happened' to be Christians; who 'just happened' to be involved in the local Lions Club doing eye clinics;  and the Husband of the house 'just happened' to be on the Board of Directors for the Gift of Sight Hospital - that primarily does cataract surgeries.

Gift of Sight Hospital, Panadura, Sri Lanka

This is something that was an ongoing challenge for us.  We see so many people who have cataracts but we didn't have a place send them for the surgery.  Now we do!

Cataract surgery is simple and very effective.  Because of our non-profit status and mission work, they will take referrals, and perform the cataract surgery at cost.  Which is between 8,000 - 8,500 Sri Lankan Rupees for one eye.  That converts to  US$50 -$55 per eye for the surgery and follow up care. Wow!

Pat and I have experienced countless times in our lives where the Lord does something that causes us to come into a divine connection we needed.  There are no coincidences with God!

As the journey continues, we are looking forward to seeing who will be helped through this God Connection.

Blessings - Gary
The setting of our studio apartment - very peaceful