It’s the Devil!!!
I watched quietly as the tractor drove toward the plane, with one
lone patient jostling around on the crude wooden platform on the
back. I was on a routine flight up to Kaikan Village, (or so I
thought). Several weeks before I had been asked by an
Amerindian gentleman who works for the Ministry of Agriculture,
if I could fly him and his son over to Kaikan and Arau Village, so
he could fog the Acoushi Ants. The “leaf cutter” ants were on
the move, and the Villager’s farms were being decimated. To
destroy these nests you have to blow an insecticide fog deep into
the ground to kill the entire nest.
No sooner did I touch down, and chop the power, then the health
worker walked up to to the plane and informed me that Brother
Reeves Gomez had just been bitten by the big Labaria snake. I
groaned when I heard the news. Labaria snakes come in two
varieties, big (5-6 ft) and small (10 – 12 in.). Both are dirt brown,
which makes them very hard to spot, and both are hemotoxic,
which means that the poison diffuses through your tissues into
your blood stream and breaks down the platelets in your blood.
If untreated, one could bleed to death internally. Not pretty!
But to make matters worse, Reeves is one of our steady
workers on the Bible School Project. In a village in which most
are trying to scratch out an existence, it’s hard to find workers
who will volunteer their time to build a missionary school.
Most spend their time working hard in the gold mines. But
Reeves was one of those few dedicated persons who wouldn’t
give up on the bible school project.
I knew that this would be a big blow to the project. But what
could be done? As the tractor backed up to the plane I put on a
brave smile and said, “Reeves!! What happened?” He grimaced
in pain and said “It’s the devil! It’s the devil!” Then he told me
the story, “I was walking down the trail, to get my hacksaw at
my house. As I stepped over a log, this snake bit me. It’s the
I couldn’t help but agree with him that the Devil was behind
this unfortunately event. From the very beginning the Devil has
maskedhimself behind the guise of a serpent in his all out effort
to hurt God’s chosen people. Revelation 12:9 calls him, “That
As we talked a small crowd of villagers gathered around the
tractor to pray for brother Reeves. With much emotion, began
began to talk with his fellow villagers. He talked about the
bible school and how he wanted so much to see it completed,
but unfortunately he had to leave because of the snakebite.
He concluded his emotional exhortation by saying, “…I don’t
know what will happen to me, but it is in the Lord’s hands.”
As I flew him to Kamarang hospital, my mind started thinking
ahead as to what sort of options were available. Fortunately
some kind soul had put an activated charcoal poultice on the
wound within 30 minutes of the bite, but now it was needing to
change the dressing, and I didn’t have any activated charcoal
When I arrived in Kamarang I immediately asked the two
Medex ladies whether they had any activated charcoal at the
clinic. Years ago, some other missionary pilots had distributed
some containers of activated charcoal around to the different
villages, and I was hopeful that there may still have the bottle
stuffed in a corner somewhere. No Luck…
So then I hit on a bright idea. It was the end of dry season, and
people were slashing and burning their farms to get ready for
their new crops. So I asked, “Has anyone been burning a farm
close by?” It turned out that they had been burning right behind
the hospital. So we all trooped out the back of the hospital to
see if we could harvest some of the charred wood.
We picked out a couple pieces that looked good, and I showed
them how they could scrape off the charred areas and crush it
up into charcoal. With a few last careful instructions on how to
make more dressings, I left and flew back to Paruima.
The next day Reeves caught a government flight to
Georgetown where he spent a few days at the government
We’ve encountered more problems with the building of this bible
school in Kaikan. The old serpent knows that if this school is
completed that it will deal a deadly blow to his kingdom of
darkness. So he is doing everything he can, to try and hinder the work. Please join me in prayers for this project, and especially for protection for those who work on this project.