As we “faith forward”
I recently read a post from a friend’s blog, and felt that what was shared described the maturation of Scalpel At The Cross, both as a collective entity and as individuals, to an absolute T. She put it this way, “Faithing forward trumps the doubting backward glance. Jesus calls all of us to walk with Him…first a baby step from the shore into the shallows. Then another step out into the depth of His purpose for our lives.” -Becky Brown
I marvel over the fact that this mission started, essentially, as a mustard seed, forged out of a simple relationship between two men (a jungle aviator & a medical student) who wanted to be obedient to God’s calling in perhaps a less than conventional way. Merging interests and skill sets, the concept of a medical ministry housed on an aviation campus in the Peruvian Amazon was born. Baby steps were taken as the two men’s dream…became two couples’ dream… became two families’ dream… became two ministries’ dream… With ever widening circles of influence, the vision enlarged, and capitalized upon the assorted talents of the multitudes.
Remembering back to Scalpel’s early infancy, there was little to no infrastructure in place. Yet, through the strength of relational ties in medicine, industry, and the church, God enabled Scalpel to grow ever so steadfastly to the point where we are now blessed beyond measure with feet on the ground in both Peru and the States, a nine member board, mission director, president, program manager, communications coordinator, Peruvian medical coordinator, and property manager. Over the years Scalpel has certainly sustained dry spells when the Lord has remained somewhat silent and distant, but more often than not, we have been both awestruck and humbled by the fact that He’s chosen to sing over us, establish the work of our hands, and shower us with significant favor for no apparent reason of our own. Through it all, God has continued pushing Himself into our story and using our platform of medicine to further His basic rescue mission for the hearts, minds, and souls of His beloved in the Peruvian Amazon. We love using medicine as instrumentation in His redeeming hands, and in so doing, engaging the mission of living and sharing the gospel He’s entrusted to us. What a privilege!
As we have evolved over the past decade plus, it is my perception as a co-founder and board member that God is clearly awakening greater and greater zeal in us for His supremacy over everything in life (our health, marriages, family, vocation, finances, recreation, service, etc.). Though our goal has never been that of becoming a large mission organization, and we have been entirely satisfied doing what we do well for the good of the Peruvian people and the Glory of our Lord, it would seem as though He is currently calling us from “the shallows into the depths,” as Becky Brown penned above. In a Prayer of Jabez, 1 Chronicles 4:10 manner, God appears to be “enlarging our territory” both literally and figuratively, with the desire to bring more blessing to the masses. We’ve been petitioned by another mission organization to purchase more property on the outskirts of the land we currently own, with the dual purpose of protecting and expanding what exists. Clearly a “faithing forward” juncture if we choose to let it be. But it feels so unsettling…$100,000 for land acquisition, and another $500-$900K to build our own Scalpel Hospital? What…after just spending over two years getting a 40 ft container of hospital equipment/supplies for one of the government hospitals we operate out of successfully through Peruvian Customs and over the Andes Mountains into Pucallpa? Overwhelming thought, even with the prospect of a Sovereign God who is for us and who lays claim on the entirety of our mission, or perhaps this is simply an example of the “doubting backward glance.”
Through both my own personal experience and observations made while witnessing others on our ministry team, it would seem as if our fervency in Spirit has grown as the challenges have mounted over the years and we’ve committed to entrusting them whole-heartedly into God’s care. With reckless abandon, I’ve watched us boldly step out of what feels comfortable and ask vulnerably for tangible help from friends, colleagues, and even casual acquaintances. We admit that in and of ourselves, we don’t have the means, financial or otherwise, to enlarge our territory and impact in Peru as we sense God prompting us at this juncture. But in humbly making the ask, and prayerfully submitting ourselves to God, we know that we can rest in however He fulfills the outcome of our request. Not our will, but your will be done, Lord Jesus.
So, we “faith forward,” trusting that God holds the reigns of Scalpel’s ultimate existence and outreach: He comes as Savior, as promise fulfiller, as Lord, and as truest treasure. What we are learning, as individuals, by virtue of being on this end-of-year Scalpel Team Crusade, is to know and trust Christ more. God is making an increased claim on our lives, and as we go deeper, our passion for spreading His supremacy in all things cannot be quenched. His purpose for our lives is palpable. Scalpel At The Cross is aflame! Please join us in this faith-dependent, faith-building mission.