Leadership can be a strange charge. We often think of leaders as elected officials. People chosen by the majority to take charge, help others, and make decisions. Our highly individualistic society likes hierarchy. Leader, co- leader, secretary, treasurer, followers.
But God ‘s economy is often so different and unpredictable. A mother took the lead, and suddenly Mom’s Against Drunk Drivers (MADD), a force that changed the way we dealt with the issue, was created. A group of misfit boat owners used their fishing boats to save thousands at Dunkirk during World War II. A carpenter with dubious parentage became the King of the world and saved mankind.
Leadership can be given, but often it is bestowed. A subtle difference, but one worth noting in the community of La Danta. Hector Muñez Rojas is the 36-year-old husband of the renowned Melissa. Melissa is the preschool teacher, and everyone recognizes that she is a leader among community members. As the Secretary of the Water Committee, she is the type of elected leader that we love at Amigos for her dedication and honesty. But when the water system well pump died, it was Hector who quietly assumed a leadership role. He assumed the responsibility of installing the temporary pump and turning it on and off twice each day. The temporary pump could not handle constant use, so each morning and each night, Hector walked to the well and manually turned on the pump so that his community had water. “I needed water too,” he simply stated, and since his job is agricultural, he had the freedom of schedule to accept this responsibility.
Last month, as he was turning off the pump, he felt a “shock” and thought, “Oh no! There must have been a surge, and this pump will stop too!” But when he pulled his hand away, the shock was actually his. A snake slowly slithered away.
“It was twilight, and I couldn’t see what type of snake it was. So, I hurried home.” By the time he got home, his hand was swelling at the bite wound, and part of his face and one leg were falling asleep. “My wife is smart, and she started me on all these home remedies. Within 24 hours, I was much better.” The day after, he was climbing the hill again to turn on the water. Everyone knew this because word travels faster than a viral TikTok in communities. The community came together and offered prayers and help.
Ordinary looking people can be extraordinarily brave and sacrificial. Putting the greater good before their own. Hector exemplifies this type of leadership, and his community knows him as a person that they respect and trust. Official title or not, Hector is a true leader in La Danta.