When I was a teenage my mom gave me a mini poster for my room with the reminder “What is right isn’t always popular. What is popular isn’t always right.” It’s been proven true time and time again throughout history, sometimes we get lucky and popular opinion IS what is right, more often it is not.
We all knew it was coming, a change of popular opinion, for a short time we enjoyed knowing that the majority of people (Christian or not) wanted to do what was right. For a short time they said “We know what the consequences may be but we know this is right.” If you aren’t naive, you knew it wouldn’t last, it couldn’t. Then Paris happened and it didn’t matter that all but one of those who planned and carried out this horrible act were NOT from Syria, it only mattered that one may have been. It somehow missed most people that ISIS telling everyone that they would be sending in agents among the refugees might be propaganda to get us to refuse them and further victimize them. It somehow missed us that we already have radicals here with Canadian (and US) passports, radicals who were born here in many different backgrounds but became angry and turned to hatred.
The sad thing is among the first to turn with the tide has been Christians. They claim we aren’t loving the neighbors next door if we welcome refugees. They claim we are naive and don’t know the risks. They claim we are just spouting “what would Jesus do” and blindly following politicians. Haha, clearly we haven’t met. Hi my name is Kristina, I don’t trust politicians and I DO NOT blindly follow them.
Some have implied that those of us who write posts urging the Church to behave more like Christ are putting ourselves on pedestals. We don’t! I write these posts as much to myself as to anyone else. They are written for me and you just get to read them too. I’m not a super-Christian. I don’t think I am any better than anyone else, in fact I am usually pretty open about how badly I fail. I share my weakness hoping it will help another grow. I write because the Lord puts things on my hearts that breaks it.
Safety and Fear
We are all afraid. We know that bringing in 10,000 plus refugees will change this country. We know that there are security risks. We know that the end is near and that is scary. We also know that when we stand before the Lord we will have two options:
We can either say “Sorry Lord, it was too risky. I was afraid welcoming refugees would mean that my country would be unsafe. I was afraid that I might face danger or persecution because I helped. So I chose not to.”
OR we can stand before him and say “I was afraid Lord, but I remembered that Your Word tells me not to fear more than 80 times. I was afraid of persecution but I remembered that Your Word promises that I will face persecution and that when I do it is a privilege. I was afraid but I remembered that you said that serving the least of these is how I can serve you. I was afraid but I remembered that this world is not my home. I was afraid but I remembered that Greater is He that is in me than He that is in the World.”
Has the thought crossed my mind that the end is very near and that bringing in so many Muslim people over might hasten it? Yes.
Has it crossed my mind that this may lead to persecution down the road? That we may be paving the way towards the kind of problems that Dearborn, Michigan has? Yes. I am not naive.
I know that persecution is coming. BUT I know that I will answer for my behaviour towards hurting people.
I am a coward, the idea of persecution or seeing those I love hurt sometimes cripples me with fear. In those moments the Spirit gently reminds me that this world is not my home, heaven is coming. If even one refugee family meets Jesus because of us welcoming them in, it will be worth any danger I face because of it.
We were never promised a safe life. Jesus told us to go into ALL THE WORLD and preach the Gospel. He promised to be with us but he didn’t promise we would be safe. These were his last words, He could have said anything but he chose these to be His last words.
We never see Jesus, or the disciples, shying away from sharing the Gospel or showing love because it might be dangerous. We see Him, them, facing dangers over and over.
Unlocked doors and hitchhiker
A post I read suggests that welcoming in refugees is the same as leaving your doors unlocked while you sleep or picking up hitchhiker who are obviously high when you have your toddler in the car with you. Sigh. Do I really even need to address this?
Yes, I lock my doors at night, there are a lot of meth-heads in this area and although it is actually a relatively safe area I am not stupid. Inviting a person who is under the influence of meth or bath salts or whatever to sit next to my child or roam around the house while we sleep is NOT the same things as providing a safe home for a refugee family.
Not our home
Posts I (and others) write are not meant to condemn. I write because I love the church and I don’t want any of us to stand before the Lord and weep over the missed opportunities to share His love. The missed opportunities to share his salvation. The missed opportunities to provide a family and their small children a place of refuge. I write to challenge you and convict you and to do the same for myself because my time is short and so is yours, we have a limited time to on this earth and limited opportunities to share Jesus with a hurting world.