"Don’t! Audrey, Please, I beg you. Just don't!"
How cold-hearted, how insincere. Nevertheless I obeyed. Despite every natural impulse, I pulled my hands away and stepped backward.
The frail lady - barely dressed - kept insisting with her motions. Holding her skinny
baby outstretched for me to take.
As Justice* (one of our Vapor Ministries West African staff members) finally reached
my side, the lady pulled her baby in, spit on the ground at my feet and turned, quickly
Tears filled my eyes, my voice cracked.
"Why? Why wouldn’t you let me hold that precious woman's baby?"
"She was about to hand you her baby and run. She was going to abandon her
baby. " Justice explained.
Did this woman really want to give away her child? Didn’t she love her child? Before I
or we quickly judge, I believe she absolutely loved her child. She loved him enough to
give him away to what she thought may be a better life.
Though I was there to help, I was quickly awakened to how easy it is for "predators"
to enter small villages like this one. Promising extremely poor parents a "better life" if
they gave up their children. In desperation, many just hand their children over. And so
the "better life promised" becomes a sick cycle of trafficked children.
"Some staff and I will go visit her and offer her a job at the Vapor Ministries Center so
she can provide for her child. She needs to know there is another way," Justice said.
Not only do our Vapor Ministries' centers provide a safe place for children, youth and
adults to have basic needs met – such as clean drinking water, access to health
services and emergency food provisions – they also allow access to generational change
agents like education, agricultural practices, business training, and employment
Mothers and Fathers are given an opportunity to provide for their children with dignity and honor by the work of their hands. They become part of a community that will watch over and protect the helpless and needy. Most importantly they are introduced to the One who loves them and created them on purpose for a purpose, Jesus Christ. Then they become the voice, the change agent, creating a ripple cycle better known as redemption.
Our team members provide for their families with dignity.
I wish I could say that was the only time a desperate mother has reached her
baby out for me to take. Every time has been forever burned into my memory. But, I
know there is hope, another way. I can now say with assurance that I have far more
stories and endless names eternally grafted to my heart of the rescued. Loving parents
raising world changers. And YOU are part of the rescue mission.
Jesus is the hope of the world and each of us are taking His light and extinguishing the darkness.