There is something so critical to the future of our world that I couldn’t publish what I had already written and planned to post today. Because we (especially those who call ourselves Christians) have a responsibility. We have a responsibility to be a voice for the vulnerable.
At the risk of sounding overly-simplistic, I feel the need to share my heart today.
Like many of you, I’m sure, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about what is happening in our country in regards to the attitudes and decisions being made by those in power. I can’t stop thinking about how it affects the marginalized and oppressed among us.
I can’t stop thinking about what it would be like to be someone born into a different situation. I think about what it would be like to be me, but to have been born in Syria or Palestine, and to be a refugee and a mom, how completely desperate and scared I would be for the safety of my children. I think about how if I were in that situation I would hope for those who could help me to be brave and help. I’m sure I would fervently pray that those who had a voice would speak up.
We are those who can help. It’s time to speak up. It’s time to stand up.
We are the answer to the cries and prayers of the vulnerable.
There is a simple truth that needs to be heard today: Love reaches across party lines. You don’t have to be a Democrat or Republican to agree on things like human decency and caring for the most vulnerable among us.
When people rise up to care for and to be a voice for the vulnerable it isn’t called political it is just called human.
Jesus was very clear about how we are to treat ALL people and especially the marginalized and the stranger, “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,” Matthew 25:35.
God’s heart for the foreigner is a constant thread through the entirety of scriptures. These are just a few of the many, many verses that tell about caring for the vulnerable:
“When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.’” Lev. 19:33-34
“This is what the Lord says: Do what is just and right. Rescue from the hand of the oppressor the one who has been robbed. Do no wrong or violence to the foreigner, the fatherless or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place.” Jer. 22:3
“He has already shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah
We cannot look away because it is uncomfortable or because it hurts. Yes, it’s a complicated political system and a complexly divided national reality, but we cannot rationalize or justify turning away the most vulnerable among us.
This is an opportunity for the church to BE the church. This is a chance for Christians to rise up and follow Jesus in being a voice for the voiceless and to care for the vulnerable.
What actions can we take?
- We can PRAY for those affected by the decisions being made and for those making the decisions. Please don’t ever underestimate the power of prayer.
- We can PROTEST. We have a voice. We do not live in a dictatorship. We can make our voice heard in protest of turning away and withholding aide for the refugee, the vulnerable, and the oppressed. We can have these conversations with our friends and loved ones.
- We can PRACTICE our faith and do some things to help. We can email or call our local representatives and let them know that we believe in immigrant and refugee rights. We can stand in solidarity with others who welcome refugees by signing a petition at (https://wewelcomerefugees.com/solidarity). We can give to organizations that have already been on the ground helping refugees such as World Relief (https://www.worldrelief.org) or Preemptive Love Coalition (http://www.preemptivelove.org). This week, our leadership at Redemption Church is looking into the best ways to partner and practice our faith as a community to help. When these are put in place, I will update this list.