Firstly, it is the call of my heart to help inform others and assist my brothers and sisters in Christ the best way I can. As Saint Paul put it: “And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.” (Corinthians 12:26, KJV). I feel a sadness knowing what they are suffering, particularly since it seems as if the Christian refugees have been forgotten, along with those from other religious minorities.
There are plenty of majority Muslim nations such as Saudi Arabia and Dubai, that aren’t taking any refugees. Surely it makes more sense for Muslim refugees to go to another country that is culturally similar to where they came from, then to travel half-way around the world to a country so different, it must seem like another planet. Christian refugees on the other hand, even if admitted to these countries wouldn’t be safe. As much as the idea of Christianity leaving its birth place pains me, the possibility of these people being wiped out is simply too great a risk for them to remain.
Secondly, as individuals we cannot help everyone, which is why the Lord gives us all different burdens upon our hearts: Some are drawn to the orphaned child, others to deliver the gospel to those who have yet to know the love of Christ. And this the plight of the Christian refugee and the persecuted church, is just one of mine.
The Western church as a whole seems hesitant to reach out to persecuted Christians in the Middle East, perhaps out of fear being labelled as playing favourites by outsiders. Fear of being criticized by others should not keep Western churches from helping out others who belong to the body of Christ. It is absurd that so called political correctness, may lead to the death of millions of Christians in the Middle East. God doesn’t care about political correctness. He cares about the truth. He cares about what’s right, not in the eyes of man, but to him. God’s version of righteousness is the only one that matters.
In the west we don’t usually consider the fact that we may someday have to die for our faith. And though we face a persecution of our own, being mocked and facing increasing crackdowns on our free speech, it is still minor in comparison to what believers face in other parts of the world. Though I have to admit of late, I have begun to run a number of possible scenarios through my mind, wondering if I have what it takes to remain faithful.
I also feel that many in the church are overwhelmed by the situation. I myself often find myself overwhelmed when I think of the plight of Middle Eastern Christians. I often find myself wondering, how much can I really do to make a difference? Then I realize, I may not be able to do much, but doing nothing is not an option.
If we do nothing, we’re no better than the people in the churches in Germany, during Nazi rule, who used to just sing louder when the trains full of Jewish people, headed to their deaths, used to go by. By doing nothing were falling right into the enemy’s hands, once he’s done with Christians in the Middle East, how long will it take before he turns to the West? ISIS like the Nazis, is just another tool of the enemy. If we do nothing, we’re next.
Either way I don’t want to have to be trying to explain to future generations why we did nothing, why the church, the body of Christ did nothing to help our brothers and sisters. I certainly do not want to be going over my life with Jesus on the day of Judgement and have to try to explain it to him why I did nothing, which is why I’m doing something. I’m writing this.
Even if it’s just to say a prayer, share a petition on social media, or to write a short letter to a politician, we can take a few minutes out of relatively comfortable lives to help. It may not be much, but through God, David was able to take down Goliath, with a single stone and a sling. If each small action is like that stone, how great would the damage to the enemy’s plan be if we all did something?
According to scripture persecution is inevitable and a sign of the times, and we know it must happen in order for Christ to return. I feel like we still have to march onward. The church is like a lamp filled with oil, and just when we think we will burn out Christ replenishes our supply once more. Though the time is near, it is not and yet it is still closer than we think.
But this is not the last stand, but one of many before the final battle. It’s time to stand with Jesus, and with the persecuted church! It’s time to do something!