If you have ever turned down a road in a sketchy part of town and looked to make sure your doors were locked, you are not alone. That is how our day started as we went to visit the home of a mother and her kids in a very dangerous part of the Dominican Republic.
People with Compassion have been robbed and assaulted here before, so we were assigned a bodyguard to protect us, even though I told them I had taken a karate class when I was 8. I guess it is better to be safe than sorry.
We were told to take off all of our jewelry, which took me longer than it should take a man, and we were advised not to take out our cell phones to take pictures.
Our Compassion host Eliza then said something that really provided a moment of clarity and shed light on the desperate nature of the situation:
“Watch your cameras and phones; that is food here.”
Desperation can drive people to do things they would not normally choose to do. Most of us have never had to even think about stealing to provide for our families.
That hit me so hard and reminded me that I have been blessed beyond measure. I need to help people who are caught in those desperate circumstances. Compassion is helping to rewrite the story of desperation by changing the lives of not only kids, but entire families.
Like I mentioned, we were on our way to visit a family living in the midst of this dangerous place. The place where we needed a body guard is the place they call home. They might have bars on all of their windows and doors, but this family has freedom in Jesus.
Maria, the mom, spoke with such gratitude for all that God had done for her through Compassion. When we asked how we could pray for them, the father said to pray for Compassion and all the kids who still need to be sponsored.
They were not concerned about themselves. They were so grateful because their daughter, Elisa, almost lost her eye, but because Compassion intervened and got her the surgery she needed, her eyesight was saved.
This girl now wants to be a doctor. I believe that will happen, and even more importantly, she believes it, too. She is a beautiful flower that is going to blossom in the midst of a place that is desperate for living water.
You can help make the dreams of a child grow and blossom through Compassion right now: