When I went to Mexico, I saw people who said they were Christians in the poor neighbourhoods and in the dump…and part of me didn’t believe them. How can you be Christians here? How can you possibly worship God while struggling to survive? How can you sing while covered in flies?
How can you be happy in a place like this?
That guy couldn’t have accepted Jesus while standing on that garbage. God can’t be in such a hellish place.
What kills me is that while I’m typing this on my laptop on my bed, surrounded by so many things, they’re still there. All those people, they’re still twenty hours away, in a Mexican dump, digging for resources. I can hear some bugs today buzzing around, but they were nothing compared to the dozens of flies that crawled on us the whole time we were there. Those flies are still there. They’re on these people, even now, right this second. They’ve been on them ever since we left, since before we came, since they decided living in a dump was better than anywhere else.
And yet–they’re happy. The little kid just ran around with his soccer ball. The father picked up Mack’s guitar and started playing. Every single person was grateful when we gave them some food. They were so thankful, so okay with life, so many smiles.
I knew that when I went there, they would help me see things in a different light, just as I helped them. But man, what a different light that was! It was like smashing a tinted window and seeing clearing, feeling clearly.
And so far, since I’ve come back, I’ve refused to look at the broken window. I think it’s because I didn’t feel such a contrast. These kids weren’t any different from the kids at church or camp. Felix was a normal thirteen year old kid. Gabriel was just his twelve year old brother. Carlos was like any three year old.
I thought Mexico would make me realize how different they were from us…and they weren’t. If you ignored the poverty and lack of education, they were just like us.
Mexico changed me not by the differences I saw, but by the similarities.