A Doctor Demonstrates God's Love to Hurting Patient

October 12, 2017 •
Dr. Sarah Hudgins and her patients.
Dr. Sarah Hudgins is an OB/GYN serving in Africa through our Post-Residency Program.

Are some people invisible?

I wonder that some days.

She was skeletally thin, hunched over in pain, and wrapped in a colorful pano (patterned cloth). She wore flip flops made from old tires. She had a combination of five confirmed treatable infections (two more suspected, not confirmed yet) and a ginormous cancer.

Dr. Sarah Hudgins

Dr. Sarah Hudgins serves in Jesus’ Name through our Post-Residency Program.

She had already been to at least two other hospitals where she was sent away and told there was nothing wrong and nothing that could be done.

Was it because her clothes were old and stained? Was it because she hadn’t bathed in probably weeks? Was it because she didn’t speak Portuguese and couldn’t effectively communicate her symptoms? Was it because she was too poor to pay for the lab test fees?

Was she invisible to the eyes that looked at her? Did nobody touch her to see if her belly hurt or if there were any odd lumps? Were the hearers deaf to her story, or ignorant of what the words mean?

Why didn’t somebody care for her?

I ran two basic lab tests and did a simple physical exam—that’s all it took to come up with a list of diagnoses. It is palliative at this point, and several family members are also now affected with three of the same infections.

She came in this morning for one more check. Today, she looked me in the eye and greeted me in the two Portuguese words that she knows: “Bom dia.” I hope, if nothing else, that she knows she is not invisible to God. Nor to me. She is a person of value, worth knowing, worth listening to, and worth caring for.

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