But God is our strong arm

Isaiah 33:2, 5-6 But Lord, be merciful to us, for we have waited for you. Be our strong arm each day, and our salvation in times of trouble. . . Though the Lord is very great and lives in heaven, he will make Jerusalem his home of justice and righteousness. In that day he will be your sure foundation, providing a rich store of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge. The fear of the Lord will be your treasure.


“Precious opal shows a variable interplay of internal colors.” Wikipedia

From Shutterstock, by LTY

Dr. P retired. Retired! Irrationally, I found myself thinking, How could he?

We lived a continent away. We depended on Dr. P’s counsel, and lately Karis had been sick more often than not. Maybe his partner will care for Karis. Nope. His partner said, “I’ve watched Dr. P care for Karis for years. But I have no idea what to do for her.”

Finding a doctor for Karis in São Paulo took months. Months of frustration as one lead after another led to a “no”; months of worry as Karis’s symptoms worsened; months of questioning whether God noticed our need.

Finally, a chain of contacts led us to Dr. Garcia. Karis fell in love on our first visit, for his first questions were not about her health, but about herself: her interests, her hopes and dreams. As he examined her, they talked about the Spanish poets. By the time he called me into the room, they were on to existential philosophers. “I have so much I need to read before I see him again!” Karis exclaimed on our way home. “In the original languages?” I teased.

Karis’s life was tough. Treatment was often painful and costly. But Dr. Garcia saw her; for him the practice of medicine was art as much as science. He helped her believe her life was worth fighting for. He set firm boundaries when Karis tested her limits. But he also advocated for her freedom when others wanted to keep her in too narrow a box. He paid attention to her heart and mind, not just her physical distress.

How does a mom say an adequate thank you for such blessing in her daughter’s life? There will be time, yes, in eternity, to express the wonder of a God who loves so much, in such variable and inter-reflecting colors. Thank you, Lord, for the gift of Dr. Garcia, a man free to love his patients with wisdom as well as knowledge.

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