Jacinto spent several days in the hospital recovering from his heart attack and building up strength. Many friends encouraged us by visiting, praying with us and caring for our children.
One morning a cleaning lady came into Jacinto’s room and saw him joking around with another Bible institute teacher. After she watched them having a good time for a few minutes she asked, “You are from a different religion right? (It was a Catholic hospital.) People who are here in the hospital with serious heart problems like yours don’t usually smile and laugh like you.”
Our teacher friend responded, “Yes, we are Christians. Our hope is in the Lord who is control. We can trust Him with whatever happens in our lives.” He then had the joy of sharing the gospel with the cleaning lady.
The glad day came when Jacinto was about to be released from the hospital, but we faced a few problems. First, our insurance did not want to pay for his hospitalization. They claimed that he must have not reported his pre-existing conditions because he was too young and the damage was too major for this to have been a recent illness.
So there was no help from our insurance to pay for the over $10,000 bill. We knew that Jacinto’s hospital stay and stent operation would have cost thousands more in the United States. Still that $10,000 bill looked like millions to us who lived by faith and prayed in our daily bread.
The second problem was the hospital policy of not releasing patients until their bills were paid in full. There was a security guard stationed at the door who did not allow patients to leave unless they showed him a copy of their bill stamped “Paid in full”. I did not have any way of paying that bill with our own money. I did not know what to do. We were both so ready to leave the hospital and go home.
I did not want Jacinto to worry about anything in his condition so I did not tell him the money problems. His parents and two sisters had come down to be with us and help out. They were able to get enough money together to loan to us so that we could get Jacinto released from the hospital. Oh happy day!
I do not like to own anybody even one penny! I did not know how we were going to be able to pay our relatives back such a large sum of money. I cried over this problem when Jacinto was not around. I prayed. Others prayed with me. I did not know what to do.
A few weeks later I got a call from the insurance company. They reversed their decision and decided to pay Jacinto’s entire hospital bill! There was no reason for them to change their minds except for the prayers of God’s people!
God was so good during this time! I was stretched far, far out of my comfort zone! It is good to face situations where all you can do is trust the Lord because then you learn firsthand that God is enough!
When I felt desperate and did not know what to do or where to turn, here is another verse that comforted my soul:
“He brought me up also out of an horrible pit (in Spanish it says the pit of desperation), out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.” Psalm 40:2