In November 2009, I experienced my first medical mission’s trip.

I traveled with a team of 17 doctors, nurses, pharmacists, physical therapists and other volunteers to serve the people of Senegal Africa. The first morning, I remember being woke up at sunrise by the Muslims’ call to prayer.  I wept several mornings for these people — praying that they would come to know Jesus as their Savior. 

Our team loaded the supplies on top of a bus and would set out to see patients. It was always a long bus ride — taking two to four hours each way due to traffic, lack of stop lights, and the rough conditions of the roads. Patients with no access to medical care often waited overnight to see us and came from long distances.  I remember as I was triaging a patient, someone laid another patient in front of me who was having an asthma attack. The need was great.

Many times during this trip, our doctors would call to ask if we had specific medication. My heart was sad because we did not, and I decided to obtain the necessary medication we needed for future trips. Since then, I’ve been able to access pharmaceutical resources in the United States that provide over $100,000 of medication for each of our future trips!

On this trip to Senegal, we made our first visit to Baba Garage. In the past, Christians were stoned in Baba Garage for sharing The Gospel. This village had no doctor and had never received a visit from a medical team. One treatment I remember is our surgeon removing a large abscess.

In this town, there was no hotel, so the Muslim mayor opened his home for us to stay. We prayed and worshipped God there!  We fell in love with the people of Baba Garage.  Because of our efforts, it opened a door for a missionary to serve and connect with the people in that community! This was certainly an answer to prayer.

Another memorable experience on this trip was a lifelong friendship made between me with my translator, Aude. After I returned to the United States, we talked frequently over Skype and visited one another on future trips. God connected us because of our love for Jesus. We’ve supported each other through difficult situations in our lives.

Even though we live 4,500 miles apart, I’m able to encourage him with words of encouragement and prayer.

Medical mission’s trips can impact many. As you can see, through this trip we impacted the Muslim people, local communities in need of medical attention, and even the translator.

Stepping out and saying “yes” to a medical mission’s trip is saying “yes” to being used by God.