Jesus and His Disguises
The following was adapted from a blog by an Alliance worker couple who serve with Envision in Ecuador and Peru. Envision is committed to building relationships through service, education, medicine, and pop culture. The couple established Inca Link Peru to provide relief to families living in a garbage dump near Trujillo, Peru.
Matthew 25 talks about the difference between the sheep and goats: the sheep did something for those in need, while the goats pretended not to know about them. When we first arrived at the garbage dump where we minister, this chapter grabbed my heart.
We could not stand there with our arms crossed—we had to do something to meet Jesus in His disguises: the hungry, the imprisoned, the stranger. How could I ever face Him on Judgment Day and hear Him say, “You saw me in need and you did nothing”?
As part of our ministry in the dump, we organized a weekly soccer game that is followed by a one-on-one Bible study with the young teens who live there. I was paired up with Moisés, 15. We always bring food to share before the Bible study, and he said, “I would like to pray for the food!”
Moisés folded his hands and knelt in the dump. I looked around, not knowing what to do, but I finally knelt down next to him. I thought, “This is the first time I have ever knelt before God in the garbage.”
“Dear Jesus, thank You for providing food for me today,” Moisés prayed, “but I pray for the poor—that You would provide for them today. And if You want, I will share with them what I have here.”
My heart was torn apart. We had “poor” youth leaders sharing with the poverty-stricken people in the dump—and here is this kid praying for the “poor.”
Then it struck me. In Matthew 25, Jesus does not say to go to the poor. He says to go to the needy. Some of the wealthiest people I know live in a spiritual garbage dump. The question is: Will we visit Jesus in His disguises, or are we too busy to notice or too comfortable to bother?
Hope and Help
Today, Inca Link is meeting the physical, social, and spiritual needs of the children, youth, and adults who live and work in the Trujillo dump. Thanks to donations from children and help from teams in the Western Pennsylvania District, we now have a plot of land and two small buildings. Every Saturday a group of teachers goes to the dump to share the hope of Christ with the 250 people there, providing practical assistance that includes food and tutoring services.
There is still more work to be done. We need about five more short-term teams to come this summer to help us. Would you be willing to share what you have with those in the dump?
What You Can Do
The prayers of the Alliance family allow Alliance workers to live and serve all over the world. Pray with the rest of the Alliance family using our weekly Alliance Prayer requests.
Read the October 15, 2012, issue of alife magazine to learn more about this couple’s ministry.
- Visit envision-culture.com for more information about this and other opportunities to serve with The Alliance.
- Visit www.incalink.org to learn more about the ministry of Inca Link.
(Note: Clicking on these links will take you off of the C&MA Web site.)