The division of Christians with the dilemma of refugees

I have considered, at length, the dilemma facing Christians with whether or not to receive refugees in our country.  I have nothing new to add to all the posts, blogs and articles that have been eloquently written, for both “sides.”

I have my own opinions but I will not use this forum to debate them. Instead, I want to use this space to cover another concern…one that I think is more serious and pressing.

That issue is how Christians are treating one another in all these writings and different venues.

I have seen words of vehemence, accusations and condescension, as well as calling other’s Christianity into question, way too many times.

As I was reading in Ephesians today, I was further burdened as I read the words Paul wrote in chapter 4, verses 1-3.  “Therefore, I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God.  Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.  Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.” 

Some of the words I have read have been anything but humble and gentle, as accusations and opinions have flown.

Attacks have been made against Christians instead of perpetrators who have created this crisis of refugees.   Neither have other religions or countries been confronted.

Instead, Christian against Christian, in anger and pride (in my opinion).

Scripture has been used to create an atmosphere of guilt.  Honestly, I can find Scripture to use for both sides of the argument.

I am so disheartened by all of this.  Satan must laugh as he’s using another event to turn us against one another.  As he’s mocking one of the greatest commandments, and also the chance, once again, to prove to the world that we love one another.

There are other concerns I have about all this, and a little off subject. But one is the fact that there are plenty of opportunities that we pass up every day to help those we do know.  Needs of which we are certainly aware, whether emotional, financial or spiritual.  For Christians AND non-Christians.  Yet, countless people are able to argue a dilemma that is greatly charged with controversy.

Please, can we step back a moment and give God a chance to work in this?   Do we really have any choice in the outcome, at the end of the day?  And can we please love one another as Christians, and reach out to needs that are at our fingertips?

 

 

5 Ways to Use THE Red Cup for God’s Glory

Red starbucks cup

You would have had to be visiting Santa at the North Pole to not have heard about all the Starbucks fun with “the” cup,  this past week.

I like Starbucks…we buy whole beans, grind it and take our own everywhere we go.  Never buy the bitter stuff in the cup, or the foo-foo stuff that would add about 10 pounds in one sitting.

Having come out on that (that we don’t – gasp – boycott them), if you can stand another post on this….here are some suggestions for using all this for God’s glory.  Yes, even Starbucks.

  1.  Go hang out at a Starbucks to get to know people.  You will certainly find interesting individuals who may be hanging out there as well, because they’re lonely, searching for meaning, trying to appear cool, or whatever.   As a Christian, we claim to have what the world needs…let’s take it to them.
  2. Use the cup as a bridge to talk to people about Jesus.  Red.  I mean – this is a perfect tee-up.  “Have you heard about the hoopla that Starbucks created with this cup?”  “What do you think?”  “Do you know what red means to me?  It means the precious blood of Jesus Christ.  He sacrified it for you and for me…have you ever thought about that?”
  3. Leave a great tip for the servers in the Name of Jesus.  Not a tract, not change from your purchase, but a deliberate good tip…and tell them why.  That God wants them to be blessed.   No strings attached…just love them in this way, in Jesus’ Name.
  4. Take a fellow Christian out for coffee and have true fellowship…at a Starbucks.  Pray together, laugh together, study the Bible, love them in the Name of Jesus, in front of everyone there.  Maybe, just maybe, someone will see you and wonder…what is it about you that is different?
  5. Don’t shame or ridicule, but get into decent conversations with others as to why or why not they patronize or don’t.  I have seen a lot of attacks on Christians who have chosen one or the other.  Get to know people…don’t belittle other Christians for their choices, but find out why.  Intelligent discussion can be much more persuasive than sarcasm or shame.   And that is what we should want for one another in the family of God.  Perhaps the Starbucks cup will help us grow together as brothers and sister in Christ.  🙂

And, Merry Christmas to you all!  May it be filled with the true joy of knowing Jesus Christ, our Lord…Who came as a baby – to die as the Perfect Son of God…for you.