By Art Missirlan,
JVMI Dental Volunteer
Fourteen years ago, with tears running down my cheeks, my life as a follower of the living God started.
Now as a dentist some 19 mission trips later, I’m called to go with JVMI to the outermost parts of the world. Mizoram, India sure feels like the outermost parts, but once you are there, wow!
This people group was by far the one that touched my heart the most. They are so giving, caring, thoughtful, and considerate. I know I’m the one who is supposed to give and to help, but I couldn’t have out-given these people. They let us into their lives, their culture, and their way of caring. I can’t wait to go again.
The conditions for us Westerners were tough—sleeping in tents on hard floors; cold washes with a pitcher and bucket for a shower; reconstituted, freeze-dried food; bus rides that went on forever over bumpy, twisty roads. Let’s not forget the 48 hours of travel to get there. And did I mention all the need medically and dentally? It was overwhelming.
The dental need in every child that I say was incomprehensible for a Western trained dentist. All children older than 18 months had all or nearly all of their teeth rotted out beyond recognition. I asked the Lord with each patient which tooth or teeth I should remove, and He was faithful to answer. For those we saw, it was a relief from infection and pain.
We need more medical and dental professionals’ help. How can we as Believers not want to go out and reach the lost, as well as help our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ? The Lord will talk to you more clearly than you will imagine—so loudly, in fact, that even the deaf will hear and the mute will speak!
Visit Jewish Voice Ministries International online
More about Mizoram in our April 2010 issue of Connections. On the Publications webpage, click on the Connections image to download the PDF.