During a service while visiting my home church in Abuja, the minister challenged us to set monthly goals we want to achieve in 2017. Well that was easy. If you recall my end of year news update, I had pledged to help get Favor, the one-eyed girl, medical attention after the brutal attack on her family in north central Nigeria. However an unplanned reunion in northeast was to make my trip to Nigeria quite remarkable.
I last saw Nick about four years ago. I was so touched by his situation that I spent weeks searching for resources to get him medical attention. I called him "the man with no nose." Boko Haram terrorists separated Christians from Muslims and fired kill shots in their heads at point blank range. Nick was the sole survivor.
He traveled 8 hours by road to meet me. My heart broke as I saw the piles of receipts for job application "fees" he paid to government agencies that never employed. After his fiancée left him for someone richer, he'd had a relapse and one half of his face had caved in. He now bleeds daily...
I arranged for him to travel 9 hours to the city where he'd had surgery last for a check up. As soon as he arrived, the doctors immediately had to stabilize him. His BP was over 200!
He was kept and monitored from last week to this week as we tried to figure out resources for his surgery. Before I traveled to Nigeria, a contact sent me $100 to use as needed but Nick's last surgery was over $1200. Since I split the $100 between him and a widow, it only covered his travel.
This week Nick emailed me that the hosts I arranged to provide him temporary housing said they were done helping so I began scrambling to find back up. The next day, they called me. "We have good news. A medical mission of seven American doctors is here right now. They have agreed to provide emergency surgery for Nick!"
Please pray for Nick's surgery today. The American medical team squeezed him today before they leave tomorrow...
I feel a deep sense of satisfaction that somehow I was rightly aligned with the stars to be able to facilitate all these for this guy. From our reunion two weeks ago, he is now having life-saving surgery today. I don't just advocate for victims, I care and provide for them and check and follow up on them but it's not the me aspect it's the divinity aspect that inspires me. Human rights work is dealing with the worst darkness of inhumanity but it is these rare silvers of sun rays that say "yes" I made a difference!
I am even more overjoyed at the one fellow who out of the blue called me and sent me $100. He has no home (lives in a mobile home) and no cell phone and works as a seasonal farm hand. His tiny inconsequential donation helped literally save a life.
Another stunner for me was that this was all unplanned. I paid my own way to Nigeria for an unrelated matter I had been working on for years. During the visit, I faced a Nigerian government witch-hunt (the third since 2015.) This led to a visit to inspect our refugee schools in the northeast where our shoe-string 2-year old charity has put more kids in school than the Federal Government’s program! Then Nick and I met for dinnner...
As we continue to plod on under bizarre circumstances, the Nigerian Air Force bombed a refugee camp killing hundreds the day I arrived while Nigeria's president Gen. Mohammed Buhari has been trying to get us arrested since he came to power in 2015, please pray for our safety and success in helping the least of these with the least we have.
Similarly, please pray for one of the Chibok girls in the US taken from us by agents of the Nigerian government who has now mysteriously announced her conversion to Islam. All the Chibok girls in government custody in Nigeria and the US are pretty much prisoners. http://www.cbsnews.
I have filed a lawsuit against the government for falsely claiming we didn't put the girls in school when it is the government, like Boko Haram, that took them out of school. Can you imagine how demoralizing it is for the hardworking girls to be lied about by their own government that they are not in school??? This is the nature of the evil we are up against in addition to the Boko Haram terrorists ... harming our reputation to stifle our advocacy.
Finally pray for Favor the girl who's eye was slashed by a terrorist's machete. Last week she too saw a doctor and has begun preparatory steps to clear out an eye infection before any other procedure.
I went in expecting to help her as my new year goal but then Nick happened. I can't wait for the lives to be touched in the subsequent 10 months of 2017.
See more from my trip https://www.facebook.com/
Nick tries on a suit I brought him
Favor shows her scarred right eye next to her brother who was also shot that night.