The last 8 day’s in Cambodia have been filled with beauty, horror, excitement, passion and life. I love this country, this is why I keep bringing teams back. We currently have 22 here on the Steps of Justice team and we have gone from being a bunch of individuals to a team of friends who love and are working great together. We only have 3 day’s left on the trip, so I thought I would do a quick recap.

We spent the first day just learning about the country. The history, culture and religion. To see an amazing, yet horrible documentary on the history, specifically the genocide you can stream Enemies of The People. After the orientation we spent the next 4 day’s working with children at risk just outside of the city. We partnered with the long term staff and ran a full on kids program. It was beautiful to see these kids singing to Jesus in their own language, led by their own people (not westerners) and hearing the truth about themselves, not the lie that they are unwanted, unimportant or useless. These kids and there families are hearing that they can make a difference in Cambodia, even though they are poor. It was beautiful to be a part of. We were not only just telling them they could make a difference, but working to meet their personal and physical needs. As I write this a group of members of our team is out building a house for a family in need.

During these 4 day’s we also spent time with other NGO’s to hear what other people are doing in Cambodia to bring change. We heard from Hagar International, World Vision Cambodia, Friends International, IJM and Daughters. All of these organizations are non governmental organizations who work with victims of sexual and bonded slavery, prostitution, and oppression. It was amazing to see that you can make a difference in this country by being a lawyer, a garment worker, a cafe manager, a crisis councilor, or a cook. All the while we were encouraging the team in what their next step is going to be in regards to doing justice and bringing the good news of Jesus to the poor and oppressed.

Yesterday we went out to the country side, where most of the people in Cambodia work and live. The village we went to is on the side of a rock hill. The villagers, approximately 40 people spend their day’s breaking rocks with small hammers, crow bars and picks. They work for 8 + hours a day and get paid approx. $25 a month. Their water is from a dirty stream, their houses are made up of wood and tarp and they work under the blazing sun breaking rocks all day. We met a mother yesterday who just had her 6th child, Savannah. Savannah is a beautiful little girl (pictured above) and is healthy, so far. The problem is that her mom is not producing breast milk anymore. It may be from the water or any other reason, but this is a problem.

The person who works up in the village is a westerner named Brett. Brett is putting together a UV water filtration system for the village. Brett is also bringing supplies to the village (they have no electricity) and bringing food and now formula for Savannah. He had heard about the village from a friend and knew he couldn’t just leave them as they were. It is a beautiful thing.

I am seeing so many people do justice out in Cambodia. It is inspiring and challenging. It isn’t easy out here. It is hot, the language is hard to learn, the culture is way different and the mentality of a Buddhist is that they accept their fate, as it is a result of their past life. I am excited to get back to the USA and share the stories of the people I have met here. I am excited for the team as they go home and share stories and see their lives changed as well.

My heart is with Cambodia and her people. I want to see this country grow and come into the plan that God has for her.

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