With so much talk about abortion these days I have something I want to share since everyone seems to be putting their two cents forth. This is not a structured argument or anything, but it is part of our story.
Many of you know about our son we are adopting, Yeison. Many of you know we have had him since he was only three months old. Many of you know that he was born to a mother who is mentally handicapped and lives in very poor and difficult circumstances.
But here is something many may not know….
Our son is a product of rape. His mother was left alone and abused by an unknown man, and it was later discovered that she was pregnant. This was absolutely a tragic and horrific act, and if ever found, that wicked man should be brought to justice. Castrated even!
Yet, I thank God that abortion is not legal here in the Dominican Republic. At least not yet, although sadly it may be just a matter of time. Yeison’s biological mother is mentally about four or five and can never live by herself and will always need care, but she knows she has a child. She knows his name. She asks about him. She loves him. I am sure she remembers what happened to her, though she may not be able to process everything that happened during that traumatic experience. Even in her condition you can see that she loves her son.
The question is, how is this Yeison’s fault?! If so, how?
Another thing that others may not know is that Christen and I had prayed for a few years to have another child, but unable to conceive. Admittedly, at first I did not want to start over. Our children were getting older and I had my plans. And then, I was dead set on them. But my wife prayed for me and the Lord changed my heart.
We prayed for a long time, and interestingly enough, during that same time God had us working in a very poor area for a few years where I shared the Gospel, taught Bible studies and preached often.
The Lord orchestrated things in such a way that He not only answered our prayers, but He put us in a position to help Yeison, his mother and her caretaker. Yera (his biological mother) is in a much better situation today then the day we found her with baby Yeison, by God’s grace.
But the sad reality is that he probably would have died had not the Lord crossed our paths when He did. He suffered of malnutrition and was dehydrated when we found him. Yera’s mother was dying of cancer at the time and bed ridden, and Yera had no idea no how to care for Yeison. She couldn’t even care for herself.
But this got me thinking and it truly horrifies me to ponder, what would have happened if abortion were legal here?? Especially in a case like this with Yera’s condition and it being a rape?
I am almost certain that we would have one son less than we have today. It breaks my heart just to think about it. Even in cases of rape, like with our son, the child should never be the one to pay the price. It is never ok to murder a child in the womb, period. Every human being, be it inside of the womb or out, at any stage of development from conception, has intrinsic value and created in the image of God. We simply have no right commit such atrocities regardless of how some may try to justify it.
Lord willing, Yeison could be the first one in his family to study and perhaps go to college. Or better yet, he may throw himself upon the mercy of Christ and be used mightily by the Lord someday. But this I do know, he is already bilingual and very bright. We love him SO very much and really could not imagine life without him today.
His siblings love him and care for him with such tenderness. He is no different to them at all. He has brought so much joy to our family, and God has taught us so much through him over the last five years. We are so very thankful that the Lord allowed Yeison to be born in a country where abortion still is not legal or chances are, he would not be with us today. Just the thought makes my heart extremely heavy. Abortion is murder, be sure of it, and though we must be gracious when addressing the topic, Christians should work together to end it…. AND minister and give hope to those who may have had an abortion but now are feeling the deep loss and sorrow. There is forgiveness and there is healing for them.
When I see Yeison I see myself. He really is a constant reminder of the Gospel for us. For when we were not God’s children, Christ came to rescue us and through Him we can be ADOPTED into the family of God.
For me, apart from marriage, adoption is one of the most beautiful pictures of the Gospel. The Almighty Creator becomes our Abba Father. We go from lost enemies and rebels, to becoming co-heirs, privileged sons and daughters. This makes my heart rejoice and extremely grateful. And the only proper response to this is to worship passionately and live for Him. Praise God from who all blessings flow!
May we live and act in such a way that people can see the Gospel in all areas of our lives. God forbid they only hear it in our words alone. Pray.
Dear mission partners, friends, brothers and sisters in Christ,
First of all, thank you everyone for your prayers and support over the years. It is truly appreciated more than you will ever know. We believe that those who pray for and support missions play a role just as important as the missionary on the field.
An update on our daughter Maya:
As I write this had to taker her to the hospital last night for a consistently high fever over the last three days now. With today (Saturday) four days.
When we got to the hospital and they examined her, they said there hasn’t really been much dengue fever around this area, but a few cases of chikungunya are showing up again. (For those unfamiliar with the terms, we are talking about mosquito borne illnesses). But we were recently far from the city in an area with lots of lagoons and Maya did get bit up pretty good. More than the rest of us at least.
They did some blood work on her it came back showing that it was viral and the doctor started saying that it actually might be dengue, but they would need another blood test. At first they said in 48 hours, but within minutes they said it was much better to get it done and compare the results within 24 hours just in case.
Her blood pressure was a little low and she was somewhat dehydrated. So we need to control the fever the best we can until then, keep her hydrated and pray until the next blood test to see what’s going on. Thank you everyone for the prayers.
In less than 24 hours, our daughter’s blood test results got much worse (her levels of her white blood cells and red blood cells etc.) The doctors said it is a possible dengue or it could be a couple of other things but she needs to be hospitalized according to her bloodwork.
There is a specific test they can do to know for sure. All we know right now is that she is getting worse. Usually we treat dengue or chikungunya just keeping hydrated and controlling the fever with Tylenol, but there are some dangerous strains of dengue that can cause you to hemorrhage, so she needs to be watched closely by doctors and have bloodwork done every 24 hours. The private hospitals wanted a $1000 deposit up front, but since we do not have insurance we had to take her to a public but decent children’s hospital. The same doctors from the “good” private clinics also work here though. The difference is you only pay for the treatment, meds and/or materials needed if operated, but not a hospital’s fee for the stay in a room if hospitalized or doctor’s fees. For now we wait another 24 hours for another blood test to monitor what’s going on. Prayers for Maya are very much appreciated.
As we approach Summer we are considering a short but necessary trip to the States. It has been about a year and a half since our last visit and we have some serious needs. Fund raising from the mission field has proven to be very difficult. We would love to visit and report back to those who pray for and support us. But we are honestly are very behind in raising funds for usual yearly needs such as the kids schooling, funds for the ministry itself and many personal needs as well. A lot due to the difficulty we have with Yeison’s visa situation. It has simply proven difficult to raise funds when out of the country.
We try to be very active concerning updates by personal interaction with donors online, newsletters from our website shared on social media, and in emails, and of course, Facebook with the most frequent updates on our ministry and personal pages. Perhaps it is due to this unfortunate gap in reporting and fundraising in person that giving has dwindled.
It happens over the years, times when we are getting by well financially, and others when things get much harder for us. We have survived using love offerings and such that come to us. But our actual monthly budget needs are no longer being met, and the needs and bills keep coming. When things are good financially, although there will always be needs, and some things that are not in our power to resolve, with what we have received in the past we were able to do much for others and pay the bills. When giving takes a hit (due to the many commitments here) many times we must use personal funds to cover the needs. But you can only do that for so long before the well starts to run dry. Between the needs of the brethren, the bills and needs of the church, our family, even cutting corners on some of our own needs, we have come to difficult spot financially.
Two or three months of unexpected and expensive medical bills, repairs, and needs that come up on top of the usual expenses is all it takes. Then comes the tension of our reality here.
We depend on the support of the saints back home. We have to live, we have bills to pay, but we are here to serve them. How do we not help them? When things get tight the temptation is to buckle down and go into survival mode. But it isn’t that simple. We have food and clean water, clean clothes and for now at least, our health. While some dear people we know, brothers and sisters in Christ even, don’t have the basic necessities often times. Or they can’t afford the medicine they need to stay alive. It does something to your heart. It does something to your conscience. At least it does to mine. When we can’t help as much or are running out of money, it isn’t very easy to be here.
The kids schooling is a hard thing as well. It’s time to enroll for next year and we don’t have the money right now. We are thinking about moving to a cheaper home but there are lots of costs involved in moving, including first and last month’s rent which we don’t have right now. We need to get home and do some serious fundraising but we can’t as a family stay long because of Yeison’s visa situation.
Even on extended stays in the past, (just the way it has played out), I have spent much time reporting and preaching wherever I am invited, but run out of time and don’t get to fundraise as much to “new” audiences for new supporters. And honestly, it is just very difficult to ask for money, or anything else for that matter! I really struggle with this even though we have been here seven years.
It also gets expensive really fast staying in the States and trying to travel with a family. It’s been by God’s grace and the generosity of the saints who open their homes to us and lend us vehicles that has allowed us to get around by in the past.
In a praise report, thankfully one pastor and his church has graciously invited us to Louisiana to share about the ministry, and offered to cover our trip there. There may be some support coming from that. Praise God, we are very thankful for that! But we would also like our kids to at least have a short visit home as well to visit. It’s been two years for them and they would like to see the family and we totally understand and would like them to have a break as well. We would need to fly our kids to Florida and find our way there from Louisiana which we cannot afford at this time. There are some churches and dear brothers and sisters we should (need) to visit in different states to report to and thank for their support and prayer over the years. I am not sure how I will get there as of yet, the Lord has always provided a way in the past. Please pray about helping.
Our newsletters are usually not this transparent about the hard side of things personally and financially. We share much about some hard things happening in the lives of people around us and in the ministry. But very few know the many difficulties we have faced secretly and quietly suffering over the last seven years, and some even presently as a family. So I am just going to say it. I am pretty concerned about our financial situation and we need your help! We are certainly praying for the Lord’s provision. Yet I know He ordains the end as well as the means, which is no other than the bride of Christ, the church itself. Brother, sister, will you please pray for us and give if you can?
We need new monthly mission partners. People have been good about occasional love offerings and such in the past, and many times are specific answers to prayer that come in just in time, but it is difficult to build a budget around that. We need an increase in monthly funding to catch up and cover the extra costs of the church and the brothers we support here personally. There’s the church’s electric, water, supplies and mercy ministry fund come from our offerings. The medical insurance for a very sick sister here, the maintenance , insurance and fuel for the bus, an evangelist in Haiti and a pastor here that we support personally. These are just some of the needs above and beyond our children’s schooling and other family needs.
How can you help?
By praying, we have no doubt that in a major way the prayers of the saints back home interceding on our behalf have played a major role in sustaining us this long on the mission field. The Lord has answered those prayers time and time again. We have seen the Lord touch the hearts of some saints back home and seen His faithfulness to provide in big and unexpected ways through those prayers in the past.
By giving, if you are already a mission partner, would you consider sacrificially giving above and beyond your current commitment for X amount of time to help ease the financial burden we currently have?
And also by sharing, would you be willing to share these needs with your local church, friends and other believers in your own circles who understand the importance of missions and have a passion for the Gospel?
We purposely do not use a sending agency with large overhead costs that retains a significant percentage of the money donated, so you can be sure that your gift goes directly to the mission field.
If the Lord so lays on your heart to give back to Him by supporting this ministry, you can send your tax deductible gift to:
CMC serves hundreds of missionaries, but they ONLY receive the funds for us and in no way have control over how the funds are to be spent or what we are to do as a ministry, which gives us liberty to make real needs a priority and yet have room to be sensitive to the Spirit’s leading. This is one of the reasons why we went with CMC. There are also three trusted pastors which sit as our mission board.
You may begin sending your support to the Salgado DR Mission at any time at the address above. (Checks should be made payable to Central Missionary Clearinghouse or C.M.C.)
You can also now give to the ministry here in the DR online through the new giving solution called “click and give” at the CMC website.
To get started you just need to click on the link below and register the first time. Just a simple click on the donate button on their page (see link below), and then click the “click and give icon/button”.
You will then have a private giving solution that comes with many benefits to you the donor. If you have any questions please call the office (tel:1-800-262-7729 or 281-599-7411), and they very kindly will walk you through what you need to do.
You can also donate to this ministry online with Paypal. Click the donate button below and you can send support of any amount directly to the ministry. You can choose the option of doing a one-time donation and in emergencies this is the fastest option to get funds to us.
Unfortunately through Paypal we are not set up for receiving recurring donations at this time. But the other online giving option above does the recurring monthly donation option. Simply register one time and that’s it.
For tax exemption, you must send your donation through Central Missionary Clearinghouse (CMC) at the address above.
Again, we do not use a sending agency that gets a percentage of the money donated, so you can be sure that your gift goes directly to the mission field.
Whatever you decide, thank you so much for praying for us and helping this ministry. God Bless You!