What’s With All These Refugees?

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Listen to today’s Daily Text

daily text logoMarch 1, 2016

Matthew 2:13-15

13 When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up,” he said, “take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.”

14 So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, 15 where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: “Out of Egypt I called my son.”

CONSIDER THIS

Imagine you got an urgent call at midnight, waking you from sleep with the news that your family’s life was in grave danger and that you must pack up only what you could carry, get in the car and drive a thousand miles or more to Mexico. Now! Morning would be too late. Oh yes, and you would stay there until you heard otherwise. Imagine the trauma and instability of such a disruption!

Why on earth should God be on the run? Why would the one who holds all authority and power and dominion have to run away, in the night no less, to escape the reach of a despot King?

Why on earth should millions of men, women and young children be on the run today? Why would the One who holds all authority and power and dominion allow the forcible exile of innocent families from their homes to escape the reach of rogue dictators?

The Savior of the world became a refugee in order to save refugees. He entered into the plight of the displaced and disgraced in order that they be placed into grace.

As I write this I am sitting in a small regional jet en route to a speaking engagement. Two rows up a child is inconsolably crying– no screaming. My first impulse was to pop in my ear buds and turn on my Chris Tomlin worship music playlist. Then it hit me. Was I really about to turn up my worship music in order to drown out the cries of a child. Is that what I’m doing with my life—turning up the worship music to drown out the sounds of desperation all around me? What if that baby screaming is the worship music I need to be listening to this day. Maybe it’s an ancient echo from the midnight road somewhere between Bethlehem and Egypt. Maybe it’s the exiled children of Syria crying out through this child. I want to listen but truth be told, I’ll probably take all I can stand and turn the music up.

It’s uncanny. After landing, I found myself in a hotel shuttle van. The driver insisted I sit in the front seat because we were about to pick up twenty refugees who he told me would smell very badly. He was not lying. This time, though, rather than breathing through my mouth, I decided to inhale the smell. Something tells me that’s exactly what Mary, Joseph and Jesus smelled like on day six of their long walk to Egypt.

Our God became a refugee. The question for us is will we look for him now in the refugees swarming all about us? Or will we close our eyes, breathe out of our mouths and turn up our music? Something tells me Jesus smells a lot more like refugees and has a lot more in common with them than he does with me. And you?

Daily Text MATTHEW 03-01-16

THE QUESTIONS

1. Have you ever considered that our God became a refugee? What implications does that have for the way we think about refugees? How does this challenge you?

2. Have you ever considered that God was on the run from evil? How do you respond to that thought?

3. Does this idea that God was a refugee seeking refuge in a neighboring country impact your thinking about the borders of your country?
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J.D. Walt, is a Bond Slave of the Lord Jesus Christ.  jd.walt@seedbed.com.

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