Doctors are possibly some of the lowest paid people in Asia for the amount of training required for their field. I recently went to the hospital (Doctors don’t have offices here; they practice in hospitals) to see about getting some help for my back. Here’s a quote of the prices:

Specialist…20 RMB/visit
Professor…10 RMB/visit
Other Professor…10 RMB/visit
Associate Professor…7 RMB/visit
Regular Doctor…3 RMB/visit

20 RMB is less than 3 American dollars; 3 RMB is less than 50 cents. Kinda crazy, huh?

After feeling the bones in the lower part of my back and hearing about my symptoms, the doctor I visited this past week sent me to the CT (Computerized Tomology) Room. An hour later the sheet of pictures was developed and ready for me to take back to the doctor. I slowly made my way back to the examining room, my right hip jutting out and my upper body slightly bent forward. The doctor took a look at the X-ray-like pictures and then asked me where I came from. (No, I don’t think he was implying that the pics of my bones were so strange that it gave me an alien-like appearance!)

He was wondering how far I would need to travel because he was going to prescribe that I go back to where I came from and have surgery. He proceded to tell me my condition is very serious. According to him I have 3 lumbar discs moved far out of place; usually people only have one disc out of place.

After this report, I called a couple of my doctors in America and took their advice (taking pain killers, doing a bunch of excerises, putting ice on the area). My back had been in extreme pain to the point where I could only be out of bed for about an hour. If I was out for more than an hour, the pain would be almost unbearable. Basically, everyday for about a week I had a big enough window of time to go to a nearby restaurant for food and eat a meal before heading back to bed. Ministry was just about impossible. Some girls came and hung out with me in my bedroom, but that was not how I wanted to envision spending the rest of my time this year.

I want to thank everyone for praying. As I write this I am about 90% better! I only need take about half the pain killers I was advised to take last week, and I don’t have to lay down at all throughout the day! I can bend over and touch my toes, which I couldn’t do before! I’m really encouraged! Your prayers have been soooo effective! Continue praying that I will be completely, 100%, healed!

This week was one of the country’s 3 national holidays. Schools have been on break, but we held a 3-day training session for people and showed the first 6 sessions of ISOM (International School of Ministry), which teaches the foundations of our faith. It was amazing to sit through the sessions with my friends from our fellowship!

God has been building our faith…I love being a part of what He is doing!

I’m not planning on going back to the States for surgery. I have another appointment with a different doctor tomorrow, and I hope to hear a different report. I’m believing God for His complete healing!