Visa Day

Today was Juddah's appointment at the American Embassy for his Visa. Berhanu, Yiesmachew, Habtamu and I left early this to pick up mom and Juddah to head to the appointment.  I am so very thankful to report that his Visa was granted, and tomorrow morning I will go back to the Embassy to pick it up. That was the easy part.  We still have one more unexpected hurdle to cross. We need the final Ethiopian Stamp of Approval on his traveling documents. The stamp is much like getting a document notarized in the US, it's an official stamp, but much harder to actually obtain. In Ethiopia everything is done by committee, so to get this final stamp, we must go before a committee at the office of Authentication and Registration of Documents office and they will review all of the medical and legal papers and then decide if they will give them the seal of approval "stamp". After we receive the stamp, Juddah will legally be able to travel to the US for his surgery. The past 3 days have been spent traveling all over Addis, talking to countless people in many different offices trying to put the puzzle together for Juddah's final documents. There is no manual for obtaining a medical visa and the paperwork that must accompany it, no one place where you are given instructions on what needs to be done, you learn bits and pieces as you go along. God continues shine his grace on this entire process, and reminds us as we go along that He is in charge and we are not. Today when at the office of documentation registration we were told that we also needed a referral from Black Lion Hospital. We had a referral from Korean Hospital, thinking all along that was all we needed, but due to some rule, somewhere we also needed a referral from Black Lion. So off we headed. I have been in a lot of clinics and hospital while in Addis, but today topped the cake. As we walked thru the crowded wards of patients, and passed thru the pediatric unit, it was almost more than I could bear. Each room filled wall to wall with cribs, sick children all ages, some too big for the cribs laying curled up so their feet would not hand out thru the bars, smells that instantly had me breathing thru my mouth. I remember thanking God that Juddah would not be staying in a place like that and praying for the patients that had no other alternative but to receive care there. After talking to 3 different office personal in 3 different offices, we finally found the Doctor we needed. While standing at his assistants desk, she was letting us know of the procedure we must follow to get the referral.... Go back to the check-in desk, get Juddah a card, and then wait for appointment. The attending doctor would then take Juddah's case to a committee and they would decide if his case would go to the final committee of 5 who would then decide if they would give us a referral. It would probably take about 3 days she said... and tomorrow is a holiday so 3 days from Monday.  I think I just stood there with my jaw hanging open, and could feel my heart pounding out of control, I took a deep breath and asked God to help me hold my tongue and temper. When I turned around a man was standing there in a long white coat, and asked me what I needed, he must have sensed my impending explosion. Explaining to him what we need, he asked us to take a seat. I  wasn't quite sure what we were taking a seat for. Then I looked to Berhanu and Yiesmachew, who both had smiles on their faces.... Yiesmachw came to where I was sitting, and whispered in my ear... that is the head of the committee... the final committee for the referral.... really! Still unsure of what was about to transpire, we patiently waited as 3 medical student candidates went in and out of the office for interviews. After the last one was done, the Doctor asked me to come into his office. As I unloaded all of Juddah's medical and legal papers on his desk, he first read the report on the the CT scan, and the letter from the hospital in VA who will be caring for Juddah. After he was done, he looked up, and said.... I am going  to write you the referral right now! That referral needed the signatures of 4 other doctors, 3 of which were present in the office because of the medical student interviews.  Coincidence? I think not... hand of God? for sure.  So over the next 30 minutes he wrote us the referral we needed and got the final signatures and we quickly skipped over the 3 day committee process. Tomorrow, we will head to the office of documentation where we once again will have to face a committee who will then decide if they are going to put the governmental seal on Juddah's traveling papers. Confident that the Lord has this in control, and that His will be done, I anxiously await tomorrows committee meeting and finally seeing that big blue stamp, put to Juddah's paperwork. Never before have I walked as many flights of stairs or seen the inside of so many offices, or been told it was someone else in some other part of town we needed to see in one day as today. Defiantly a character building day for me, one that will not quickly be forgotten.

Trying to think of what scripture to end this post on, remembering that Juddah's number at his embassy appointment was 166 today. I decided to look up Psalms 16:6

The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places, surely I have a delightful inheritance! Psalms 16:6

Coincidence? I think not.... Gods perfect plan? most definitely yes!

Prayer Warriors still needed!


Jamie said...

This is truly am amazing work of God's divine hand... So excited for Juddah and his future and praying for each of you as you continue to follow the Lord's call!!!!


Holli said...


jody said...

love you Cherrie--you know I am on the edge of my seat waiting-AND PRAYING!!! hang in there and listen to the whisper behind you "This is the way, walk ye in it..." as He had led you every step so far. miss you and will see y'ALL (more than 1 in the south = y'all :) ) SOON!!!!

Tammy said...

Oh so wonderful to hear!! And LOVE the sovereign work of our Savior!! Thank you for doing such a great job updating! We love and appreciate you!
Still praying!

Christie said...

praying that all details are worked together for juddah. my son was at black lion hospital for 2 weeks while we were waiting to travel to bring him home. i have pictures of him while he was there and could tell by the crib he was in that it was not good. sad to hear how bad it is...but happy he never has to do that again:)

Heather said...

Amazing, Cherrie! Praying right now for continued favor for Baby Juddah.


BlessingsAbundant said...

Praying for you and sweet Judah!!! 5 min of favor is better than days of power.
Praying God's favor will go with you and before you at each appointment.