From Thighland to Thailand

February 19, 2012

Thailand 4.2

Filed under: Uncategorized — markchinmd @ 3:00 pm

Thailand 4.2: Humility


February 18, 2012-Saturday


Good Morning America! 


Day two is a traveling day and we will also be loosing a day since Thailand is 15 hours ahead so we will be arriving on Sunday so It may seem that I skip a day when I go to local time.


Okay, I woke up humbled again.  First I have to admit that I am not a very good traveler.  I’m a terrible one.  I complain a lot.  In fact, there are few things that I dislike more than traveling although the destination eventually makes it worth it.  It’s the Traveling time and airplanes and TSA and the hassle factor.  There seems to be so much time wasted and it is not very relaxing even when you DO take a vacation.  It’s cramp, we’re in the same clothes all day and all night, we stink, we sweat, constantly adjust our wedgies, eat fast food or anything in sight scrambling for leftover pieces of food, wreak halitosis, can’t shower, go unshaven (including beards, mustache, legs, and bikini lines) and undergo TSA screening with undressing, dressing, x-ray and pat down and probing our bodies (At least they didn’t make me remove my Depends diaper to see what was in it). We’re in crowds, bumping into , coughing, and sneezing onto each other and spreading our germs and have sticky dirty hands getting filthier.  As I attempted to freshen up in the 2 x 3 ft. lavatory stall this morning I had to get down on my hands and knees to wipe the floor down from washing my face and dripping water down my elbows, My butt was sticking out of the open door into the aisle straining my aging back as I was mumbling explicatives. Forgive me Lord.


For these team members THIS IS NO VACATION! I’m beginning this journal today on my new macbook air nine hours into the 18 hour flight from LAX to Bangkok.  We are in economy class and at $2,000 per seat that’s an oxymoron.  At least they don’t call it 2nd class or worse stowage. Premium economy would have been nicer: more room to stretch out during these lengthy flights.  It’s going to be about 30 hours door to door once we get to the, not 4 or 5 star, but two star hotel.


As I’m venting out to you, God hits me on the side of the head and says in his typical baritone voice: “You moron, where I’m sending you, my child, they experience all your so-called inconveniences and discomforts everyday” “So chill out you spoiled brat!” Okay, so God isn’t a name caller and maybe that was my conscious speaking to me.  But He’s right.  Again.  Many of the people we will encounter and treat have very little.  Little food, little clothing, little money, little supplies.  Little homes, err, shacks.  Showering is a luxury.  Toilets are a hole in the ground hopefully with something to squat on and no toilet paper.  Running water is rare as is electricity.  Clothing that they wear are 2nd hand, hand-me-downs. They are thin from malnutrition (I envy the thinness). They walk for miles and a family of five traveling on a scooter is a typical scene. They have access to little medical care. 


To quote an unknown missionary: “They have nothing and are happy.  We have everything and we’re unhappy.” Ain’t that the truth!


So I will Chill out.  That will make my wife, Lena, happy. That will make Bill happy and probably the rest of the team…  “Count your blessings, count them one by one.  Count your blessings See what God hath done.”


Let us focus on the mission at hand.  It’s not about us, It’s not about me.  It’s about Helping our fellow man. (Sorry, I hate clichés) As the US Navy says it: “It’s not a job, it’s an adventure.”


Thank you First Chinese Baptist Church for allowing us to go on this mission.  It is a privilege and honor to represent FCBC and be god’s healers and servants.


Thank you, Bill, for assigning me to Journal.  It makes me stop and think before reacting.  Something I seldom do.  it’s a revelation.


Have a great day back at home, we miss you!  -Mark





Thailand 4.1

Filed under: Uncategorized — markchinmd @ 2:58 pm

Thailand 4.1: Servitude

February 17, 2012-Friday

Welcome to our Fourth Medical (To Be politically correct, our Medical-Dental-optometrical-pharmaceutical-nursing-general helper team. But for simplicity please allow me to use the generic term “Medical team to Thailand (which could also mean Thailand-Laos-Myanmar (formerly known as Burma)-and maybe China if we can).” Should we just say South East Asia? Okay well it ain’t here in the good ole U S of A.  Somewhere over there, Over seas, Over the rainbow way up high.

We are all excited, ready and willing to go.  In fact, we are ahead of schedule… by 15 minutes.  It seems easier and more fluid the more trips that we make.  Perhaps, as a team we gel and cooperate and know what to expect.  We have effective and efficient team leaders Bill Ho and Pastor Jack and Marine Master Sargent Richard Bruce, USMC.  The first most common phrase is “Praise God” while the second most is “Yes sir!” followed by “No sir!” And then “Blame Bill, It’s his idea!”

FCBC Medical Team ready to leave for LAX

Serving is a humbling experience.  You all should try it when given the opportunity.  It gets us out of our comfort zone.  God challenges us and won’t put you in situations that you can’t handle. 1Corinthans 10:13 “God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength but with your testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.” I keep reminding myself of this verse.  It has been said that ”it is easier to give money than of yourselves.”  God has blessed our church and their families.  I am proud of this team that make many sacrifices to serve.  We have to take time off of our busy schedule, give up vacation and sick leave hours, slow production at our offices and sacrificing revenue.  We have to get vaccinations (Lena and Steven are newbies and had six shots a piece over several weeks) and still are subject to  motion sickness, diarrhea, Malaria, Worms, Typhoid, Hepatitis, and even Leprosy (ask us in  20 years to see if we contracted it).  We brought along an AED (automated external defibrillator) and resuscitation equipment for, not only in an emergency for patients, but for our team members as well.  We have team members that can potentially die of natural causes on this trip! May they rest in peace, God-Willing. God Bless those Octogenarians!!  You don’t have to go over the rainbow to serve but please evaluate the gifts and talents that each of you have be blessed with and search your hearts prayerfully and god will open the doors for you.  Just walk through.

Look what ‘s happening right now to American born Chinese Jeremy lin, outstanding guard for palo alto high school leading his team to the state championship in basketball. Overlooked and denied a basketball scholarship he went to Harvard and was an excellent guard.  He went undrafted by the NBA and eventually signed with the Houston rockets last year. Then he was sent to the minor leagues (D-league) and then cut.  He was picked up by the Golden state warriors and then dropped to the D-league and traded to the new york knicks and then dropped to the D-league without letting him play and sat as a bench warmer and slept on his brothers couch in manhattan.  God opened his door.

Only when the two guards ahead of him got hurt did the knicks let him play and in that game he scored 25 points and  the knicks won.  The next five games he started and averaged 28 points and accumulated the most points scored by an NBA player starting his first five games ahead of Shaquille oneal!  One game he scored the winning shot with 0.5 seconds left on the clock. The Knicks are now on a seven game winning streak.  He is the first American player of Chinese or Taiwanese descent to  play in the NBA.  Who said Asian Kids Can’t jump?!  Why do I bring him up?  He is a man of God and glorifies him in his interviews.  He is a humble man. He is an overnight and international sensation and brings God’s awareness to an international crowd.  This is his Linsanity and this is his Linderella story, He has been described as Linvincible, and Lincredible, and all the derivatives that you can think of.  You see him praying and gives thanks to God.  God is using him as his humble servant.  Where can you serve?

I would like to thank our send off crowd today.  I can’t remember everyone but thank you Pastor Dennis, Michelle, Lani, Vi, Irene, Vicki, Kelly, Courtney, Ping, Sarah, Elizabeth, Collette, Rachel, Diane, Nanette and her mother, Dr. Mao, Jeanne, Joanne, Ed, Herb, Mary, Grandma lowe, Sharon, Diane, Mrs. Tajiri, Tom, leslie, Irma, Melissa,  james, and Dirk from Channel 47 who covered our story.  We also were covered February 9th, see for video segment at our packing meeting.

We arrived at LAX at 1800 and met up with Dr.Kane Kuo with Amy, Sam, and KK and Dr. Diana Lee and Friend anne. Dr. Owyang’s Brother James and his wife Geri along with John Patton sent us off with all of our 28 medical bins and 16 luggage checked and miscellaneous carry ons for over one ton of supplies!  As long as my toilet paper makes it I’m great.

We will try to post this journal to a blog site with a link on the church’s website for hopefully daily updates.

Sawatee Krup- Medical Team International, c/o Mark Chin

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