Friends of Project Inspired, David Sandler lives and works in Iraq for an organization called Medair, which is doing a lot in the region:
1. Directly trying to help Syrians in Syria.
2. Helping Syrians (and their host neighbors) who have fled to Lebanon and Jordan.
3. Helping the Yazidis, Kurds and Iraqis who have fled from fighting inside the borders of Iraq.
With the on-going refugee situation happening across the pond we decided to chat with David and hear what’s happening and how we (the Project Inspired community) can help. Here is what he told us:
“I know countless (COUNTLESS) people and families who are just desperate to get out & away to Europe.
These people are NOT migrants.
They are survivors, people who are “internally displaced” within politically defined borders, but realistically refugees from their homes.
When war came and killed their men and ransacked their homes and raped their women and young girls (and in many cases kept them for sexual slavery), they had nothing to return to. Their lives weren’t “forever changed” – they were destroyed. When people seek to escape war and atrocity they seek a land that will take their soul-tired, PTSD poor, victimed huddled masses. That’s currently happening.
These people will WALK across Turkey and Eastern Europe.
Think the ending of “Sound of Music” but with a twist: mountains, deserts, and a lot further to go to a place with a new language and people who might think you are migrants just trying to steal their jobs and plunder their country’s resources.
They travel over 1,500 miles in desperate hope for salvation from brutal oppression.
That’s like hiking from New York City to Dallas, or from Kansas City to Los Angeles.
From a Christian perspective what can we do? What can the United States do right now?
Well, there are 3 verses that jump to my mind & heart:
1. “And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.” Matthew 10:42
2. “And he answered, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.'” Luke 10:27
3. “This God-his way is perfect; the word of the LORD proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.” 2 Samuel 22:31
And then, a summary verse that results: “We love because he first loved us.” 1 John 4:19
Christians take refuge in God. He is a shield. Shall we not be shields and protectors and water givers to men, women and children seeking protection from the nightmares and wars they live in, whether in Syria, Mexico, Iraq, South Sudan, Central America, Southeast Asia, or our own American gang-riddled and poverty-stricken cities, or anywhere else on this planet?
Jesus is not a God of constructing big walls and mounting guns at the border, or a God of fear or isolationism.
He is a God of love.
Jesus does not condemn because of race or religion or anything else. He commands us not to judge, in fact. Why?
Because He. Is. A God. Of Love.
I will conclude with this: if we shut off our TVs or turn a blind eye to the refugees of problems of the world that we live in, and try to stay above and out of the fray, then we ignore and deny what we believe in.
Do not close your eyes. Open your doors. Have no fear. Go. Love. Serve.
If you want to give to Medair (which we highly encourage) please go to the following link: http://goinspi.re/1N7HoqH
Additionally, one of our favorite bloggers Ann Voskamp has offered up 5 ways we can directly help this situation beyond Medair. If what you read above has moved you, it’s time to act. That’s the Holy Spirit moving within you.
Go here for those ways -> http://goinspi.re/1Uxb8hc
“1 So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy,
2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.
3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.
4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,
6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,
7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.
8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,
10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Join us in praying for the refugees and all the aid workers who are willing to risk their lives serving those in harm’s way.
The views expressed herein are solely David Sandler’s and should not be taken, in any way, to reflect the official opinion of any organization.