"He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the LORD require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?"
This morning, our team walked to Paz y Esperanza, an organization here in Guayaquil that is all about this verse. I love passion. I am passionate about passion. One thing I absolutely adore about my God is that He is a passionate God. He cares for His people, He remembers His people, He upholds His people. He is passionate about His people. He, the Creator, is passionate about His created. Us. He is passionate about justice, about those who are overlooked, mistreated, and cast out. The passion that I have is a small glimmer of a reflection of the passion of my Creator.
Paz y Esperanza is a group that is passionate about the justice that our God desires. They work to bring justice to children and women who are victims of sexual abuse and who have been enslaved. Over 20% of children here have been sexually abused. That is over 1 in every 5 faces that should be laughing, shining, an embodiment of the childlike faith that Jesus encourages. Many victims do not have the resources to bring justice to the situation, and this is where Paz y Esperanza, with the International Justice Mission, comes in.
My half of the team went into a different area to help a family build a restroom of sorts. In this, I mostly weeded, shoveled, and stomped upon dirt. Manual labor lies way closer to the center of my comfort zone than sharing the Gospel with strangers or trying to speak Spanish. It was nice to serve in a comfortable way before I will go and get stretched past whatever limits I imagine on myself.
We also got to play with the puppy and kids there, giving piggy back rides, eating crackers, and lifting little girls into a truck "otra vez!" (and again and again).
It blows my mind that we get a command as big as "do justice," and sometimes, all that means is "Jenna, I want you to shovel some dirt. Smile at the little Ecuadorian girl who won't smile back. Pull weeds." I can do that.