Chikungunya and the Cell Phone Thief
Well we don’t have “Chikungunya” (yet), but it’s been spreading all over Georgetown like wildfire. The Adventist hospital where we live has been receiving a steady stream of infected patients seeking treatment. Day before yesterday when I stood up to preach at our little church, I asked the small congregation if anyone had gotten “Chikungunya” and to my surprise about five hands went up.
For those of you who don’t know, “Chikungunya” is a mosquito borne virus which originated in Africa in the 50’s. The name ‘Chikungunya’ is derived from a word in the Kimakonde language, meaning “to become contorted” and describes the stooped appearance of sufferers with joint pain. The virus is of the same family of viruses as Dengue Fever, except it spreads far faster, and the symptoms are much worse.
We’re concerned about this because we always seem to have a cloud of mosquites that lives outside our front door. They seem to like to live in our shoes. Every time we go in and out of the door, the mosquitoes flit merrily inside. Joy a couple days ago bought some mosquito coils to try and keep them away, but I’ve heard that it’s not good to smell the smoke from these coils since the smoke is carcinogenic and has been shown to cause cancer. You can’t win!!!
Please pray that we would not contract this disease since this would really disrupt our mission. Please claim in our behalf Psalms 91:3 “Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.”
A week ago someone stole Joy’s cell phone from our kitchen counter.
It was Sabbath morning, and we had just finished breakfast and were getting ready to leave for church when a knock came at the door. The tall young man (18 years old) poured out a semi-believable story of how he was going through some hard times at home, had slept outside because he had had an argument with is dad, and needed some food.
I had mixed feelings about inviting him in, but I could tell he did seem to be in need. After talking it over with Joy, we both decided to take the risk and invite him in.
Before I invited him in I looked around for any loose electronics that might pose a “temptation” to him. Both my cell phone and Joy’s cell phone were sitting side by side on the kitchen counter, and I slipped mine in my pocket. I toyed with the idea of hiding Joy’s phone, but because Joy’s iPhone was having a charging issue, I decided to leave it on the counter to see what he would do.
Since he was approximately my size, I picked out some fresh clothes for him to change into. He took a shower and sat down to breakfast. I don’t know if he had eaten breakfast already, or wasn’t used to our cereal, but he didn’t seem to be overly hungry.
After breakfast he sat down in the living room while Joy cleaned up the kitchen. I had to catch a quick shower to get ready, so I disappeared into the bedroom to get prepare for church.
When I emerged, the young man was gone, and so was Joy’s broken phone. Joy said that he looked really nervous and had some sort of lame excuse why he had to leave right away.
I’m glad we were able to help him out a little, but I’m also deeply saddened by this experience. Please pray that God would somehow reach his heart before he makes a truly catastrophic, life altering choice.
Other than that, we’re doing pretty well, and the Lord is opening more doors.