Friday, November 27, 2015

BLACK FRIDAY

For many of you this is one of your favorite days of the year--a day to shop until you drop or get knocked down--whichever comes first.  Thanks but no thanks---if you gave it away--I still have no desire to be caught in the madness called Black Friday.



Today is the official beginning of the Season of Christmas.  During the Advent Season, I will post  several blogs hovering around the Spirit of Christmas- again with the liberty of an author's loose association--and slightly twisted thinking at times---but in my mind--all wrapped around the theme of the Gift of Jesus.

Our world is in turmoil today---the very name Isis can evoke a dichotomy of response from all of us.  We are fearful for our personal safety--as these madmen strike death and destruction on the entire world.  We have become consumed with how to protect our own borders--how to keep the enemy out---withdrawing into a protective shell with no room in our inn.  I confess--my initial reaction is exactly  this---how can we be safe and enjoy our freedoms without fear of sneak attack?


Photo Credit-Fox News

And then I read this post--by a sweet friend who is serving as a missionary among those who have become refugees --been displaced-hounded-targeted by this force of evil.


We sat on their floor & ate chicken. They served us graciously and hospitably. We were laughing now & enjoying each others' company, but half an hour earlier we were looking at pictures of home: Syria. We saw weddings & newborn babies, we saw fathers and cousins. As casual as if she were telling me he lost his job, she said "That's my dad. ISIS took him for a week, but he got away." They told about trying to take the boat to Greece. "It sank. We were holding babies & children above the water so they wouldn't drown," she explained. Children played with my hair, rolled into my lap,

We drank coffee, we danced, we laughed.

And it felt natural. It felt like there was no reason to be afraid. It was fun!

Refugees, Syrians, Iraqis - they may not have names & faces to you. But they do to me & I promise you, they are just as human as you are. I've eaten at their table.

To protect their safety, I cannot give you the name of this brave young servant of Jesus, but they have my deepest admiration and prayers.  As I told them when we dialogued about the things they are seeing, while we must protect you and not give a name to the face of courage and service, it is no secret from God what you are doing--how you have become the face and hands of Jesus to the least of these.


Photo Credit-BBC

As I rolled this conversation around, I was struck by the similarities of the oppression of the Jewish people during World War II.  Evil men use the innocents--the least of these --to further their cause and we tend to turn our heads - in an effort to protect ourselves.  It is a diversionary tactic and one that is aimed at causing a fear reaction  Yes--I recognize all the controversy that goes with this--but this is a first hand account--it is not all young men who are refugees---there are women and children caught in this holocaust.  For them---everyday is a Black Friday of fear-loss of home--loss of loved ones--displacement--and uncertainty of the future.  The blackness of do I live through this day--or is this my last day--what hope do I have?  

Reading the words of this brave servant of Jesus, brought to my attention my own response.  My tendency to take care of me and mine--to hide in the cave of my imagined safety.  The truth is---we could be the ones fleeing for our life--we could be attacked---we could be displaced--and then who will step up to help us?  God has allowed evil to roam freely about the earth--and make no mistake he is a formidable opponent.  He seeks to kill and destroy all and especially those who claim the name of Jesus.  So what is our response going to be to those who are fleeing the face of evil?  What God given responsibility do we have to our fellow human being?

I have no good answers.  Open our borders---somehow I think these refugees had much rather be in their own homes again.  But what are we going to do about the least of these?  Search your heart---ask God for the answer---and pray--pray--pray for my dear young friend who is giving their life to serve these whom God loves---just as He loves us.  The gift of Jesus was given to us and to them---to all who will accept it--He came that we might have life--life eternal.  What is our response to His gift?  How would He have us serve "The Least of These"?


Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.  For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
Ephesians 6:11-13




4 comments:

  1. No shopping here, no thanks...besides, one would have to drive to Buffalo, Rochester or Elmira...no malls in our small town.

    We were watching Anthony Bourdain last night, and he was visiting Beirut, Turkey and some where else in the middle east...anyways...over there, people are use to living that way (shocking, but true). As for open borders...my friend, not sure I want to open that can of worms...since the current president has been in office--there is no vetting process anymore...no checking for this or that and he even had a homeschool family deported back to Germany, where the officials took the children away--and they were here on religious reasons. My personal feelings, he is a muslim sympathizer...he has (his office) has denied people for being Christian many times, yet, he wants ....never mind...I told you can of worms. I just got done on a study of Islam/Muslim for my World History class...shaking my head...I think most of the people are good--and prob believe in some sort of God--or their case Muhamad...I just don't know, Lulu...I just don't know...you can't come here and practice Sharia law (like in Indianapolis and Michigan) and not obey our laws...

    ANYWAYS---GREAT POST. I think we all can agree we live in scary times....Blessings

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    1. OH--yes-NO easy answers! Knew this would draw some fire--BUT as Believers---I think we all agree--we are charged to take care of the "least of these". How to effectively do it is a huge question. AND I fear we are on a slippery slope, Friend. As a student of history--you are more than aware of what happens to all great societies. Probably not in my lifetime--but I fear for my children and grands. This is a mess of huge proportion!
      Blessings, Friend!

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  2. As you say, Lulu, God has allowed the devil (evil) to roam freely about the earth. But the important word here is "allowed". God is still and always will be in control and has placed limitations on how far the devil can go. No doubt what is happening is happening according to His will. Have we got the Faith to trust Him?

    Praying for world peace.

    God bless you Lulu.

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    1. Amen, Victor- He is a mighty God!
      Blessings!

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Your comments keep my writing and often cause me to think. A written form of a hug or a pat on the back and an occasional slap into reality---I treasure them all!