I first came across the International Justice Mission when Jamie McIntosh was establishing the Canadian arm of the mission in Canada. It was 2002 and Jamie was thoroughly convinced of the message he had been given for the people of Canada. The mission of IJM Canada is
“To protect the poor from violence by rescuing victims, bringing the criminals to justice, restoring survivors to safety and strength, and helping local law enforcement build a safe future that lasts.”
He knew that it would not be easy; justice ministries are not 100 metre dashes; they are long distance, endurance runs. Quite frankly, his zeal scared me and I was not sure the message would be well-received in the church; but, I also admired his willingness to speak out and say things that others had said before him but needed to be said again. His words rang like those of an Old Testament Prophet:
“Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundations; You will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets and Dwellings.” Isaiah 58:12
He sounded like our Lord rebuking those who thought that they were above reproach:
“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices – mint, dill and cummin. But you neglected the more important matters of the law – justice, mercy, and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.” Matthew 23:23
Bow Valley Christian Church will hear these words again as Mark Wollenburg represents the International Justice Mission of Canada at our World Outreach Weekend, 2014. Hear Mark speak at the Saturday (February 1) banquet and the Sunday (February 2) morning service. He will tell us of Project Lantern designed “to demonstrate the effectiveness of a law enforcement based strategy to reduce the prevalence of sex trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation of children in the Metro Cebu area” of the Philippines.” We will all be challenged.
“Victims of injustice do not need our spasm of passion. They need our long obedience in the same direction. They need our legs and lungs of endurance.” IJM Founder Gary Haugen