Mark your calendars busy from August 9-19, 2011 and come with me and the Steps Of Justice team to Phnom Penh, Cambodia. As posted last week we are going to be running a 10 day outreach to Cambodia focussing on Justice issues. I am more excited about this outreach than I have been about any of the trips that I have done in a long time. I am going to be doing a series of posts leading up to the outreach that will hopefully inspire you and provoke you to come a long.
James 4 talks about true religion as taking care of orphans and widows in their distress and not being corrupted by this world. One of the key focusses of this outreach is going to be on orphans. There are lots of orphanages in Cambodia, but one in particular stands out to me, the one we pray we will be working with in Phnom Penh.
The House of Rainbow Love Orphanage (sounds like a hippy orphanage) is an orphanage that cares for kids with HIV/AIDS. This orphanage is beautiful, not really on the outside, but on the inside. It is filled with children who in most areas of Cambodia would have no reason to smile. When I walked into the orphanage 2 years ago we were rushed by kids, kids who basically have a death sentence on their lives called HIV. There was this one little girl who I will never forget named Tita.
For some reason Tita clung hard to me. Actually, each person on the team had a little Cambodian child who clung to them. I couldn’t go anywhere without Tita by my side. She showed me her room, which was one steel framed bed in a concrete white wall room. She had a few pictures up on the walls that she colored with other teams who had come though, but there were no toy’s under her bed or any dress up cloths in the corner of the room, just another bed where her roommate slept.
It wasn’t a technical or complicated time at the orphanage. We didn’t see masses of children coming to Jesus. We didn’t see anyone healed of HIV, at least none that I know of. What we did see and do was to obey the command that Jesus gave to care for orphans in their distress. For a moment these kids forgot that they were alone. They forgot that they didn’t have any living parents, or if they were alive they had given their kids up. For a moment the staff working at the orphanage had time to rest, or time to catch up on things that they were behind on. For a moment there was laughter, hugs, airplane rides, singing and games. It was beautiful.
Doing justice means taking steps, whatever steps you are capable of taking to care for those who have lost their voice or have had their voices taken from them. Doing justice means giving that voice back. While in Cambodia we will spend multiple day’s caring for, playing with and giving joy to these orphans who Jesus loves dearly and gave up His life so that they could have one.
So, if you are interested in the Steps Of Justice Cambodia outreach please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks to those of you who have contacted us already, we are excited about doing justice with you. For more info on the outreach click here.