It has been a long day – but a good one. I have been watching Jesus heal. And feed. And love. And change lives.

At 8am I turned up at the house that we have built for a very poor family in Kahama, near Kabale where we are based. The family has been highly dysfunctional and the first of today’s miracles was that, at 8am, they were not only ready…..but washed, dressed and clean. This is a MAJOR step in the right direction and I thank God for it. Last week I was very hard on Constance and Charles and I had feared that they would respond negatively. Faithless pillock that I am.

So today was the second step in God’s plan for this family. First Step – cleanliness and hygiene. Second Step – medical treatment. Third Step – employment or education (depending on your age!)

We went to Rugurama Hospital where we had all six children and both parents examined by a Clinical Officer. We paid both for the examinations and also blood tests for all – and a stool test for Charles, the father. Mercy and Patrick from J1010 came with me and both did brilliant jobs.

Mercy patiently explained what was needed for the stool test to Charles………for whom listening skills may be Step Four on the plan. There was a good deal of consternation (and hilarity) when he appeared in Outpatients proudly bearing his entire stool on a bit of toilet paper. My life is increasingly like a Viz cartoon strip. ‘Johnny BP and the Halfwits.’ Sigh.

But, after all the adults and children had been tested, and after Charles had washed his hands, I took them for lunch to reward them for time-keeping, improved hygiene and bravery in terms of bloods. They ate meat, got protein and drank the best Passion Fruit juice in East Africa. (The restaurant is a Passion for Jesus customer!)

Then we returned to the hospital and got the results. Most of them have worms, one of them has ulcers, one of them has a bronchial infection, and all of them have typhoid. And all of them are HIV negative, thank God. So we bought drugs and food, explained all the dosages and took them home.

None of this would have happened without Jesus. If it was not for our discipleship to Him and St. Mary’s Stebbing’s support then this family would not be changing. Some of the children may well have died this rainy season. The father would not be getting relief from his ulcers. The three year old boy’s lungs would deteriorate without the treatment he is now getting. And all of them would continue suffering reduced appetite, reduced energy, discomfort and pain from the typhoid that is plaguing the family.

And Akampurira may never have walked. We had him x-rayed today and the deformed foot that I thought was congenital has nearly completely corrected itself. The pain from jigger fleas that caused him to turn his foot outwards and upwards to such an unnatural degree that it made him lame and unable to stand is gone. And now the pain is gone his deformity is correcting itself. He now stands regularly, walks with support and part of Step Two is to get him the physiotherapy that will fully restore him.

There were some sobering moments today – most of the kids are nowhere near their development milestones.

But then nothing is impossible for God. Onward and upwards with Jesus – our healer, saviour, provider and guide.