Only God

God has done what seemed, no, what TRULY WAS impossible: the graduation of 31 nursing students from our two schools of nursing!

We have two ABWE hospitals in Togo:  One in southern Togo, Hôpital Baptiste Biblique in Tsiko, where we have been educating Togolese nurses since 1997; and the Hospital of Hope in Mango (northern Togo).  A few years ago administrators of both hospitals reported the need for another nursing class in order to adequately staff the hospitals.

I had taught in our nursing program in the south since 1997, directing the program since 2002 – but directing and teaching in two nursing schools, approximately 7 1/2 hours apart, never even entered the realm of possibility in my thinking!  I had never considered having a nursing class in Mango! God had provided finances for the south – but this all started to come together at the end of my furlough –  and there was no money at all for the program in the north.

Only God could provide what was needed! We had materials, a building, potential faculty, most of the finances for the south – pretty much everything that was needed for the next nursing program (our fifth nursing class for HBB). But we had nothing at all for the north!  I made a list of what we did not have in the north: no building, no books/resources, no teachers, no assistant director to oversee the school in the north whenever I would be in the south; no money for. . . anything!

And God provided every single thing!

**Only God could have orchestrated the schedule so that we started classes in the south (May 30, 2016) and then, one week later, started classes in the north (June 6, 2016) – a staggered schedule that worked with the curriculum and allowed me to be at each site for every trimester final exam and evaluation.

**Only God could have provided each of the teachers needed – some who serve full-time in Togo, several visiting instructors who had taught with us in past years, and some nurse educators who had never been to Togo before!

**Only God could provide safe transportation between these two hospitals for the past three years: Over 30 round trips between Tsiko and Mango – over 13,640 miles which might not sound like much to our American minds – but in Togo, over some rough roads, weaving through herds of cattle, goats, sheep, ducks, people, motercycles!!!

**Only God could have provided a brand new beautiful car half way through the program: putting it on the hearts of a surgeon and his wife to give all the funds for the purchase of an incredible vehicle!

**Only God could have allowed us to graduate 16 new nurses in the south (June 8) and 15 new nurses in the north (June 15):  two incredible graduations during which God was honored (our #1 goal!); during which we had the opportunity to thank families, friends, teachers, colleagues.

**Only God knows how many times during the past three years I said to Him, “I cannot do this”!!!  And how many times He so patiently said to my heart, “No, Sharon, you cannot. But I can. And that is the idea!”  And truly, that is what God wanted – my total dependence on Him!

I shared these verses with our graduates at both sites shortly before their graduation ceremonies: Psalm 126:3 – our incredible joy as we recognize the amazing things God has done! And Isaiah 26:12 – everything we have accomplished is not because of us, but He is the One Who has accomplished all things!

-Shared by Sharon Rahilly

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