Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Pastor's Ponderings, May 29, 2018

Treat Others With Compassion

Carla Herreria wrote an article in the May 26, 2018, Huffington Post, entitled, “Border Patrol Alters Account Of Guatemalan Woman’s Death.”It seems that the U.S. Border Patrol killed Gómez Gonzáles who had graduated from a program in Guatemala in forensic accounting in 2016. She came to the U.S. to look for a job to further her education. Her mother, Lidia Gonzáles, said, “We’re poor and there are no jobs here. That’s why she traveled to the U.S. But they killed her. Immigration killed her.”

It is heartbreaking to know that her quest for freedom from poverty and lack ended so abruptly in the “land of the free and home of the brave.”  Many in the world are willing to risk their lives because they are desperate for the freedom and opportunities that America offers. Sadly, many have had their dreams fail because of racism, poverty, human trafficking, ICE deportations, and despair. They cannot find freedom in their own country so they seek it where it can hopefully be found.

Whatever our political beliefs are about undocumented persons coming to our shores, we have a higher authority. The Bible says that when Jesus comes back to the earth, He will sit on his glorious throne and judge how we treated others (Matthew 25:31-32).  Did we help the hungry and thirsty?  Did we invite strangers in our homes or visit the sick and prisoners?  Or did we turn them away (Matthew 25:35, 36, 40)?  As we treat the least of others, we treat Jesus the same way.  Those who treat them badly may find Jesus is not pleased (Matthew 25:41).

There are many ways that we can help those who are striving for freedom. We can advocate for our cities to join others to become sanctuary cities. Food banks can use our contributions. There are medical facilities that can use voluntary help.  Organizations that support the undocumented can use our financial support and time. Let us not forget the Golden Rule that God would have us do unto others as we would want them to do unto us (Matthew 7:12).

Matthew 25:31-32 
New International Version (NIV)
31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne.
32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.

Matthew 25:35, 36, 40
New International Version (NIV)
35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,
36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

Matthew 25:41
41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

Matthew 7:12
New International Version (NIV)
12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

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