Chapter 14 DR. JESUS

Dear Grandma:
I'm writing this for Mom. Last Saturday she was taking down the curtains in my bedroom to wash them. She climbed up on the sewing machine to get the curtains off the rods. One rod sprang back and threw her onto the floor. Although she landed on her back, she managed to hold her head up so it did not hit the floor or the dresser. Her spine compressed like an accordion. We didn't move her until the doctor came. We took her to the Thai hospital in our Land Rover. They took four X-rays at the hospital. She has two fractured vertebrae but she is not paralyzed. Her insides were badly shaken by the fall and stopped working for a few days. She is in a lot of pain and has to take pain pills. She is feeling better now. The Thai doctor is the only orthopedist in Northeast Thailand. He arrived here in Khon Khen only two months ago after five years of training in America. Dad canceled all his meetings so he can be with Mom. I stay with her at night because they don't have enough nurses. It's a good thing we kids were home on vacation when this happened. She sends her love and says not to worry. Love, Evelyn

Click to Select Click to read CorrineClick to Select This unexpected turn of events provided yet another opportunity for us to put into practice something that had become a priority in our lives - trusting God as our Healer, as the One who could meet all our physical needs. I was suffering considerably because of the fractured vertebrae and the effects of the fall. The doctor had told Elmer that I might even need an operation to restore all the organs to proper function. In the meantime a Thai Christian woman, Mrs. Nong Noo, a close friend of mine, came to visit me. She knelt by my bed and prayed simply that God would heal me. She had hardly left the room when I fell into a deep sleep. To my surprise and relief, I wakened some hours later completely free from pain, with all organs operating. I knew that the fractured bones had instantly mended!

The Thai doctor was very surprised when I told him that I had absolutely no pain. He canceled the order for the steel back brace that he had ordered shipped up from Bangkok. When I arrived home, our own Mission doctor examined me and he too was amazed at my recovery. He said, "God has performed a miracle in healing you." Later, Elmer told me that he knew God had touched me when Mrs. Nong Noo prayed. God's presence had been in the hospital room in a most unusual way. Divine healing was not an unusual experience in our family. It had become a natural thing for us to turn to God in times of sickness and distress.

jpg I remember a time in Florida when I called Meals on Wheels to ask them to supply meals to my 85 year old mother. The man on the other end of the line asked her, "Who is your doctor, Mrs. Henricksen?" She replied. "Dr. Jesus." The man asked her to spell it, no doubt thinking that the doctor was probably Spanish. I later explained that Mother always asked God to heal her and that she had never had a family doctor - only Dr. Jesus.

Click to SelectClick to read GrandmaClick to SelectClick to Select Click to read Corrine and Grandma

Dr. Jesus was our doctor in Thailand too. In March 1952, I wrote in my journal: David became very sick on Monday night. Because of the diarrhea, high fever and constant vomiting, we feared he had cholera. We had special prayer by his bed. When we finished praying he vomited again. Then he said, "I want to sing!" He sang the chorus of Step by Step in Thai and immediately started to get well.

I remember another time when David vomited bright red blood. This had never happened to anyone in our family so we were very alarmed. We tried to pray but I found it difficult because my heart was filled with fear of what could happen. In the midst of my turmoil, I remembered that friends in America had promised to pray for us. Some had told me that when they were unable to sleep they prayed. David Sitting by David's bed I felt prayer surround me like a cloak. The next day David was well.

Dr. Jesus had made a house call at our home. I often wondered who was upholding the Sahlberg family in prayer that night. Many times with Elmer off on long trips, I had to cope alone with various crises. No phone, no missionaries close by, no family doctor. The small hospitals in our area did not meet even the most basic American sanitary standards. In Bangkok there were excellent hospitals but they were two days journey away by train. Click to Select Click to read Elmer, Corrine, David and Evelyn

I was thankful for the medical training I had received at Booth Memorial Hospital in New York City. God often gave me wisdom beyond my understanding and intervened in our circumstances: One night David woke up wheezing and breathing with great difficulty. I thought he might die. I prayed and I cried. After about ten minutes he began to breathe easier. He then dropped off to sleep. EvelynDavid Little Evelyn has such a bad cold that I am afraid she will choke. I prayed and God answered prayer. She slept well. Elmer has been gone a week now.

I'll never forget opening a letter from Dalat School and reading that Evelyn had broken her arm in a fall from a tree. My heart ached to be with her even though I knew she would receive the best of care. A Vietnamese doctor from the area set the bone. EvelynDavid All we could do was write letters to her and pray for her. Within weeks another letter came from the school informing us that Evelyn had to be flown to Saigon to see a bone specialist. She was having a lot of pain in the arm. Dr. Ardel Vietti, the school doctor who had not been there during the accident, accompanied Evelyn on the plane. Dr. Vietti felt that the bone had been incorrectly set. The American specialist in Saigon decided not to reset the bone since there was some improvement. He advised us to check with a bone specialist in America when we went on furlough. We did that and he, too, agreed it was best not to operate. The arm had greatly improved.

Click to Select Click to read Evelyn Click to Select Many years later we learned that a group of women in the States had prayed for "the little girl who broke her arm at Dalat School." Dr. Jesus had heard another prayer. Telegrams from Dalat School almost always meant sickness or accident. In November 1970, one of those telegrams informed us that Esther needed an operation on her foot because two lumps were growing rapidly and were causing numbness. The school authorities wanted to know if the operation should be done there or did we want to wait until the Christmas vacation break to have it taken care of in Bangkok. We wired them to wait. Esther The Mission doctor, Dr. Garland Bare, checked the foot. He advised us to go to the Bangkok hospital since there was a possibility of cancer. Two American doctors operated the next day. The biopsy showed no signs of cancer - only fatty tissue. It took 11 stitches to close up the wound. She needed a cast up to her knee. Another lump appeared seven years later, this time on the same leg by her knee cap. Back we went to the same hospital in Bangkok. After X-rays, the doctor operated on what he thought was a simple bone spur. But it wasn't a spur at all - it was a tumor. The biopsy again showed no sign of malignancy. Dr. Jesus had been present again.

Click to SelectClick to SelectClick to SelectClick to SelectClick to Select Click to read Esther and Corrine

I too was told I would have to have an operation when a doctor discovered a lump in my breast during a routine medical checkup. The possibility of cancer scared me and I was finding it very difficult to cope with that thought. Alone in my room at the Bangkok guest home, I opened the Bible, seeking a special message from the Lord. Psalm 56: 13 {KJV} jumped off the page: "Wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling that I may walk before God in the light of the living?" The phrase "of the living" seemed especially appropriate and encouraging. Peace came to my heart. EvelynDavid The doctor operated that week and removed a cyst and two tumors. The lab test indicated no sign of cancer. A later pathology report confirmed "no malignancy present." The doctor told me that the tumors were the kind that could have caused cancer had they not been removed in time. We thanked God for showing His loving care once again. Even though we lived so far away from good medical facilities, He guided us in our times of need.

Click to Select Click to read Corrine and ElmerClick to Select Click to Select Click to Select Click to read Elmer Preaching

Elmer too found that Dr. Jesus was there when a scratch caused blood poisoning in his arm and when he broke his wrist in a fall. EvelynDavid God helped us in coping with these and many other medical problems. He touched and healed us many times. Dr. Jesus was always there.

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