Waiting Time is not Wasted Time (or Romans 8:28)

Perhaps it was becoming "too routine". My 6th GHO team to this location. I knew the drill. Pack, fly over, hope and pray your luggage arrives with you, and if not, return the next day and pick it up. Predictable.

Well, the trip, or should I say "journey" started off with delayed domestic flights, which caused me to miss my international connection, which necessitated a new itinerary. I called to make sure my luggage would be reassigned accordingly because I was carrying all of the dental supplies necessary for extractions. I called a second time "just to make sure", and was told my bags were being loaded as we spoke.

Finally arriving at my destination, and none of my 3 checked bags made it, and I soon learned that they never made it out of New York. Clinic was starting the next day, but airlines had no timetable for when anything would arrive, which meant seeing extraction patients was impossible. Monday came, no info on my luggage. So I decided to go by a dental supply company on Tuesday morning and purchase some basic forceps and miscellaneous supplies. As I was leaving, for some unknown reason, I inquired as to whether they provided repair service, to which they replied, yes, but basically for only one manufacture, and named the company. Interesting I thought, because that was the manufacturer that made the portable dental unit that the other dentist brought. What a coincidence.

I finally received my luggage and equipment Wednesday evening, and was able to get "caught up" with patients requiring extractions. But the delay allowed me to spend much more time praying with, talking, listening, and loving on the refugees, which I know was as important if not more.

Thursday morning i was set up and ready to go, and midway through the day, the other dentist came to inform me that his unit had stopped working. This was a big deal as he was performing necessary fillings, and cleanings. That meant those services could not be provided the remainder of that week, and all of next week. And then I remembered my conversation with the dental supply company, and about their service on limited equipment, but ours just happened to be what they serviced.

They repaired the equipment, and fixed another issue the following week, allowing the dental team to provide all the services we had come to perform, with some "buffer time" for prayer and just spending time when without our tools.

When I sat back, and put it all together, had my luggage not been delayed, I would not have gone to the supply store, and I would not have asked if they serviced equipment, and we would have had a non-functional dental unit. Even as I write this, I can't really explain why I asked about service, as an after thought.

So though I waited anxiously, very unhappy with the airlines, I can see there was a purpose to my luggage delay, and wonderful things happened as a result.

What a coincidence??? (Tongue in cheek)!

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