Wednesday, November 18, 2015

More Reading on the Refugee Crisis

The Italy series is still on hold for now because I have been spending my writing time reading and learning instead. A few more refugee-related links:

Not Afraid - Hannah Anderson
[I want to quote the whole thing on this one--it is SO GOOD.]
I understand that we cannot solve every geo-political crisis. I understand that we may not choose to involve ourselves in a ground war in Syria. I understand moral proximity and the order of loves. I understand that refugees must undergo strict a process to enter this country, whether they are Syrian or not.

But what I cannot understand is how easily we can turn a deaf ear to the wounded man lying on the road to Jerusalem just because of ethnicity. 
I cannot understand how quickly we’ll cross to the other side. I cannot understand how, like the young lawyer, we can justify our lack of compassion by asking “Who is my neighbor?”

Your neighbor is anyone who God brings into your life–Muslim, Christian, Syrian, French, or Iraqi. When someone is lying bruised and beaten beside the road and you’re taking that same road, he is your neighbor. Run to him. When someone knocks on your door legitimately seeking sanctuary, open it. And if we don’t, don’t be surprised if that same God doesn’t come down in judgment because we’ve failed to reflect his own hospitality. We may fear the possibility of a terrorist slipping through the cracks, but Jesus reminds us that we’d do better to fear Him who can throw both body and soul into hell.
Being pro-life is not about holding onto our rights, protecting ourselves, or insisting that a choice is legitimate simply because it is legal.  This is the rhetoric of the pro-choice movement: Protect yourself first. Don’t risk your sense of security to provide a safe place for another human being.
Instead, being pro-life means having the faith to believe that the God who calls us to do difficult things is big enough to care for us in the midst of them. Being pro-life means being people of courage and self-sacrifice. Being pro-life means being people of hospitality.

Six Reasons to Welcome Refugees After Paris: America Must Demonstrate Moral Courage (Foundation for Economic Education)
After the attacks on Paris, many politicians — including (so far) the governors of Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Michigan, and Texas — have called for stopping refugee flows to the United States from the Middle East, claiming that the refugee process poses a major threat to America’s security. Here are six reasons why ending US refugee resettlement is a mistaken and reactionary approach.

Something Christian Millennials Don't "Get" (Life in Progress Ministries)
[The headline is terrible--clickbait-y and misleading, irrelevant to the content--but the content itself is provocative.]
I find myself today witnessing some Christians who seem to want to be as not like Jim Elliot as possible. I do not understand this. ...For years and years and years it has been nearly impossible to get missionaries (even sneakily) into parts of the Middle East. It’s so dangerous, some, assuming they can even get in, are likely to be killed so quickly they can’t do much evangelizing. And now, hundreds of thousands of beaten, hurting, orphaned, widowed (google “pure and undefiled religion") and broken people are trying to come to US. Is it possible that a small percentage of them want to kill us? — Let me counter that question with another question: Does it matter?
...Open up a Bible and make a convincing argument that Jesus wants us all to be safe more than he wants us to reach the lost and help the hurting.

Responding to the Mounting Refugee Crisis
Responding to the Mounting Refugee Crisis (BONUS FEATURES) from FAI on Vimeo.

The Refugee Crisis and Christian Hope - Reformation21
[This one is heavy and hard to get through, but pointedly explores some of the challenges that come through accepting refugees. The author strongly warns against sentimentality and distinguishes
 between what the state can and ought to do and what Christians can and ought to do.]
We should be under no illusion: in the name of blinkered compassion we are at incredible risk of creating an angry and powerful underclass that is resolutely hostile to Europe and its values, and a popular swing to the far-right in reaction against it. Many of these refugees seem to recognize Europe's guilt-driven 'charity' for the cultural emasculation that it is and, rather than showing gratitude for their welcome into other people's places, manifest an attitude of angry entitlement to and hostility towards Europe's places, people, customs, and societies. While this is by no means universal, it is widespread enough to justify genuine concern.

...Few moral issues facing us in our day require such careful navigation between treacherous hidden shoals of false virtues and well-intentioned folly as that of the mass movement of refugees. Fulfilling our calling to be both wise as serpents and harmless as doves is an immense, yet never more pressing, challenge.

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