God's heart has always been for the foreigner, orphan and widow. He loves the underdog. The outcast. The homeless. The stranger. Those who others look over. Our God is full of compassion and as his followers, he asks us to do the very same for our neighbors, our brothers and sisters around the world. This can be uncomfortable as we rub shoulders with people of different backgrounds, nationalities, languages and even religions. But God calls us to reveal the glory and love of Jesus wherever we are and to whomsoever he places in our path.
A Kingdom Not of This World
No matter where you stand in the ongoing debate over millions of refugees fleeing the Middle East, as believers we serve a God and kingdom not of this world. God's plans and desires is that all nations hear and see the good news of faith in Jesus. Just as the Enemy of our souls is seeking to steal, kill and destroy the nations of the earth, I believe God is opening up doors for the Gospel of Jesus Christ to reach those who have never heard before. As millions are ravaged, losing everything, wandering hopelessly I believe Jesus is deploying his followers into the harvest field of this crisis to bring good news. Good news of eternal hope and love in Jesus. That although you have lost all in this world, we are here for you, we are working to meet basic needs and you have an eternal home in heaven, an inheritance that can neither perish, spoil or fade kept in heaven wrote Peter.
Revival is Breaking Out
An update from the Global Prayer Digest from our team leader in Greece shared this news from what God is doing in the midst of the refugee crisis.
"God is at work! Tent churches are springing up everywhere. Singing draws in the hesitant and the curious. Sometimes the meetings last until 4:00 A.M. Where is this amazing revival taking place? Right in the middle of the refugee camps in Syria, Iraq, Jordan-wherever ISIS has forced the people to take refuge to escape its brutal and indiscriminate slaughter! What is drawing them to Jesus in unprecedented numbers? It is love. These refugees have never experienced such love. All they have known is the rote recitation of prayers five times a day to an impersonal god. When they hear of a God of love, hope, and forgiveness, it wins their hearts. When they see this love in action by indigenous Christian aid workers who bring water, food, clothing, and medicine to meet their needs, they are overwhelmed. But the real clincher for those who read is when they are given a Bible and actually read Jesus' words for themselves.
"Once again our God shows he is bigger, stronger and more capable than any government, man-made system or human wisdom to deal with the millions of people in this crisis. Revival is breaking out amidst the millions of people in crisis in the Middle East and even now is looking for messengers and carriers of his Presence to bring the hope of the Gospel and carry the torch of Revival.
God is No Respecter of Persons
Do not mistreat or oppress a foreigner, for you were foreigners in Egypt. Do not take advantage of the widow or the fatherless. If you do and they cry out to me, I will certainly hear their cry. Exodus 22:22-24
Ultimately it is the government's job to protect our borders and keep people safe. Our responsibility as believers is different than the responsibility of any Government. We serve a higher King and Kingdom and he shows no favoritism and he calls on his people to care for the foreigner in any and every way we can. We are invited to carry the very purpose and Presence of God into the darkest corners of the earth. And we believe this crisis is opening doors for the Gospel to reach people and places it never has before.
But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 1 Corinthians 1:27
To the rest of the world, these millions of refugees are caught in an unfortunate circumstance. But to us as believers, these men, women and children represent Christ himself. Whatever we do for them, whether good or bad, we do to the Lord himself. That is a serious weight and responsibility and one at CRI, the organization I lead, we don't take lightly. God has positioned us to respond to international crises like this, and we are calling on our brothers and sisters in the states to stand with us in agreement for revival and salvation as we minister to those shunned by the nations but precious to our Father in heaven. Will you stand with us?
Sean Malone is Founder and Director of Crisis Response International, a disaster relief organization that is able to integrate with local, state, and federal response efforts when needed. CRI is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization that resources, trains and mobilizes volunteers from communities, churches and other independent organizations for the purpose of responding to crisis, disasters and compassion initiatives around the world.