Something Far Greater (Sam Jangala)

Growing up with parents involved in medical non-profit work, I felt like I had a legacy to carry forward. Helping the poor and needy are essential to the Christian life. Matthew 25:35-40 states that Jesus considers feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and treating the sick as doing these things to Jesus himself. In Micah 6:8, God wants us to act justly, to love mercy, and walk humbly with him. James 2:20 sums up why we as Christians are called to do this, ‘faith without works is dead’.

With this responsibility and burden, I began to think about how I wanted to continue the work my parents do, and it all culminated in the model of Dr. Glenn and Mission to Heal. This was a dream come true. I’ve always wanted to train local healthcare professionals, inspire future healthcare workers, and serve the disadvantaged at the same time. I didn’t think that this model existed outside of my mind. Most nonprofit medical organizations hold medical camps that place an unnecessary burden on local healthcare professionals after they leave. But here it was, in existence for over 50 years. I could not pass on the opportunity to experience my dream.

Did I have a life-changing experience with Mission to Heal?

Not necessarily. 

What I experienced was far greater; I saw what my dream looked like in the real world. I experienced everything I dreamt of doing as a doctor at a stage of my life where medical school looks ‘$250,000’ away. If I could describe this as a light at the end of the tunnel, then that’s exactly what it was. 

In my trips with Mission to Heal to Ethiopia, Kenya, and Uganda, we worked long hours, in the heat, in the rain, with people who understood that we were there to help them. It was so pure and fulfilling, and yet it felt so simple. Life is supposed to be harder, right? But there I was, in the desert heat without a care in the world. I felt the pure exhilaration that I felt like a child playing, knowing that my heavenly father was always there, to pick me up if I fell, to protect me and to look out for me as my parents did.

The success of a mission trip should be measured not in how many times the local people remember the name of the organization that came to help them, but if they remember the impact it had and pay it forward in their own way to people who are in need. I believe that Mission to Heal is very successful in doing just that.