Revival Stops At The Border: KevinH
I have not seen the recently released Jesus Revolution movie, which is a movie about one of the main, if not the biggest branch of the last great spiritual awakening/revival we have experienced in this country. As many here already know, this movie focuses on happenings at Calvary Chapel in Southern California and how God moved when Pastor Chuck Smith opened up his church to hippie evangelist, Lonnie Frisbee, and all the bare-foot, non-shaven, non-showered hippies of his generation. These hippies on the whole were undesired and unwelcomed by most of the Church across-the-board, yet Smith followed God’s leading by opening up his church to them and God moved and ministered in great ways.
In much of today’s American Christian culture, there are large groups of people who in some ways are akin to the hippies of the 60’s and 70’s as to how they are viewed as undesirable and troublemakers by the Church – these are refugees and immigrants. These people are often lowly, dirty, and their cultures are not like ours. We especially don’t like the “illegal” ones who cross the border without proper authorization, even as most of them do so not with a careless disregard for the law, but rather with desperation to escape poverty, war, and violence and find a little bit safer and better life for themselves and their families. Even as studies show that refugees and immigrants (including the “illegal” ones) commit no more, if not even less crime on average as American citizens, we like to portray them as murderers, rapists, criminals, and an infestation. Meanwhile, we rally behind our slogans of “America First” and “Build the Wall” to express our attitudes and beliefs.
“You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.” – Leviticus 19:34
“You shall not oppress a sojourner. You know the heart of a sojourner, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.” – Exodus 23:9
“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” – Hebrews 13:2
“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ ” – Jesus
As was similarly noted in the comments here on another posting, many of the same people who experienced and/or were part of the Jesus Freaks and the Jesus Movement, this last great move of God in our country, are the same people who now recite “America First” and “Build the Wall” and decry the “infestation” of these “murderers, rapists, and criminals”. They are the ones who support ideas and legislation to make it all the harder for migrants to claim asylum, to significantly reduce the amount of refugees we accept (especially from countries that we do not like), and to send back all the “Dreamers” (people who were brought here as children and are now adults, many fully integrated in their lives here including having their own children and families). And there are many others who have joined them in these ideas and attitudes.
Currently, we are seeing another move of God that started a couple weeks ago at Asbury University. We don’t know how far and wide or how impactful or how lasting this move of God will end up being. Is it possible that we may need to change our hearts and attitudes about those who in some ways are like the hippies of the past, in order for God to choose to continue moving? Or will God keep moving regardless, and maybe as a result our hearts and attitudes are changed in these respects? We don’t know the answers to those questions, but at the very least we do know what God has exhorted our hearts and attitudes to be.
Things are already messy when it comes to refugees and immigration, and will become messier still if we open up our hearts, and subsequently the practice of our land to loosen up some of our current policies and restrictions. The messiness does not mean we should be okay with a free-for-all where anything goes as there still needs to be some manner of facilitation, structure, and respect for the law. Yet, if we choose to show love, hospitality, and compassion to the stranger, things are going to get messy.
We can look back to what happened at Calvary Chapel during the times of Lonnie Frisbee and see a whole lot of messiness. Much of it was good and the result of a great move of God, but some of it wasn’t so good. As much as God used Frisbee to help bring about a revolution for His Kingdom, Frisbee was also a very flawed man who had some serious struggles which for all intents and purposes, should have disqualified him from any position of leadership. At times those flaws were underplayed or overlooked, probably partly at least to not disturb what was happening. Subsequently, from the history we know of Calvary Chapel here at this blog, this underplaying or overlooking of certain ills and wrongs may have been a pattern that very well had its beginnings during this time, and combined with other significant events and factors, has gone on to become something that is part of the Calvary DNA in many ways to this day.
Yet, the leaders and people of Calvary Chapel in those days opened their hearts and their church to the undesirables and outcasts of their day and God greatly moved. May we take that example to heart, both the good and the bad, and consider how we might apply it to our own times.
When Kevin sent me this I laughed…it’s thoroughly biblical and will utterly irritate people who claim the Bible is inerrant.
Based solely on biblical directives, this should be a bigger issue than abortion…
Michael, I wrote it just to give you a good laugh. 🙂
It was a sad laugh…I once thought that because of all the Scriptures teach on this subject that someday we could have real and reasonable discussions.
I was wrong…but we have to keep speaking the truth anyway.
It’s a good and timely piece…
So much of the faith has become tainted by fidelity to political ideals and mantras.
And often the ones who become most offended at such an assertion are the ones who are most politically consumed.
As Christians, we should be free to have honest difference of opinions with each other as to what governmental measures and policies we believe are the most effective and strike the best balance between helping those in need and keeping people safe and maintaining a manageable structure. What shouldn’t be at any question, however, is how God calls our personal actions and attitudes to be towards those who are in need.
Do you think the movie, which is so popular among those who were part of the movement at the time (going by myriad comments on YouTube clips), will get those people thinking about who are the hippies of today whom they need to be better at including?
Most of them boycotted this site around 2012-15 because I ran border issue articles.
Donations dropped 75% overnight.
I have been working with the undocumented since the late 70s. it’s a hard life for them, but much better than the one they left behind. Over the years most of the parents of my students have been happy to be able to put a roof over the family’s head, eat better than in the home country, and hope that their children would achieve the American dream.
The church I attend, which has a growing Hispanic ministry, is agnostic on the issue. If someone gets picked up, we do what we can to help, but our hands are really tied legally. We do have some people in the congregation that are very anti-undocumented (although I have seen hearts softened when they realize the sacrifices that they make to get to the U.S. and survive here).
As to how many of those who are currently anti-immigrant/anti abortion were once part of the Jesus movement, I can’t say. Calvary Chapel was not a big force in most of the communities I was in (their music certainly was), and they had sputtered out by the time i returned from South America in the early 90s. Vineyard was then “the thing.” Most of the church people I know that are very anti-immigrant in churches are leftovers from the Reagan era, overly influenced by conspiracy theories.
I said something akin to this post in the comments of the last “Open Blogging.” I’m on North Idaho, which has a lot of far right folks populating our churches. Some of the people who have been raving about the movie are also the ones who protest the arrival of refugees and want walls built.
Can you tell me what church has this view:? “….undesirable and troublemakers by the Church – these are refugees and immigrants.”. Maybe I’ve been fortunate but I’ve never been part of a church that has such an attitude towards refugees and immigrants. It’s been just the opposite and I love your biblical verses.
I wouldn’t think any church has an official doctrine or teaching that refugees and immigrants are undesirable and troublemakers. However, there are plenty of people who make up the Church, including sometimes even pastors and other leaders, who will regularly express sentiments that either explicitly or implicitly express that they don’t want many, if any refugees and/or immigrants coming to this country and that those who are already here or want to come cause a lot of will cause a lot of trouble and are a burden to the rest of “us”. I have personally witnessed many of my own Christian friends and associates express such sentiments, let alone plenty of others I have read about expressing such sentiments.
Well spoken Michael.
Jefferson wrote that he trembled for his country upon reflection that God is just.
I tremble the same way for myself.
Having a more conservative opinion on immigration policy is not the same as viewing refugees and immigrants as undesirable. Conflating these issues is what politicians do. It looks at the worst instead of the best in ones intentions.
It would be an interesting study to track where the bulk of participants of the Jesus Movement-not all were hippies- ended up. Some are in churches that have similar conservative worldviews, some gravitated toward more mainline Protestant churches that often hold more progressive views, some step away from church ( spiritual but not religious), and some-I knew of many-left the faith. How many of these people- most in their 60’s and 70’s-are anti-immigration? Hard to say. But from my vantage point how many of them have been formed in such a way that they understand part of their Christian spirituality is to visit the widows and orphans in their time of trouble (James 1:27)?
Pstr Mike-I don’t know how you measure those statistics, but with people I’ve spoken with (who wonder why I speak Spanish and what i use it for 🙂 ) I find that much of it is fear-fear of others who are different in culture, especially religion; fear of dwindling resources (when statistics show that refugees/immigrants put in much than they take out of our economy), fear of the changes that new people bring. I have also found that many times, once the anti-immigrants get to know people, that more sympathy is often extended, and sometimes results even in friendship. My church is restarting our ESL program for the spring session on Thursday evening (I’m in charge). All of my volunteers are retired or near retirement age, and fairly conservative. They love our people and really want them to be successful in English and adjusting to America. I also know that most of them voted for Trump. I think positive exposure is everything.
God’s Forever Family has some material that you are seeking. It has some small sample polling within the pages.
“Having a more conservative opinion on immigration policy is not the same as viewing refugees and immigrants as undesirable.” – I completely agree.
However, that is not what I’m speaking of. I am speaking of language and attitudes that regularly refer to refugees and migrants as an infestation, as murderers, rapists, and criminals. I am speaking of language and attitudes that are seemingly only concerned with building a wall to keep “them” out, instead of, or even in conjunction with having any concern for the plight of “them”. I am speaking of language and attitudes that express that all the “Dreamers” should be sent back while at the same time showing no concern that many families will be ripped apart by suddenly removing mom and/or dad and sending them back to a country where they know very few, if any people, and do not fit into the culture as they grew up in America and not their country of origin. I am speaking of language and attitudes that express that “those people” should not be of our concern or should not ever become “our problem”, as we need to keep “America First”.
These are the things that I am speaking of. The intentions of those who express such things are quite clear and they are at odds with what God teaches us. Although it is far from a definitive rule, unfortunately it is many who hold a “conservative opinion on immigration policy” who also express such things. And sadly, many who are Christians and claiming to be following after God and being “biblical” express such things. This should not be, and yet it is.
I get it! But you’ve indicted a large chunk of the church for this attitude and when asked for specifics you won’t give me any other than many that hold a conservative view on immigration policy express such things. I’m not saying your wrong that these attitudes exist, I’m just asking for some specific examples of churches or leaders of where you are seeing this attitude manifest.
If I could, I would link to all the comments and postings that come across my Facebook feed from my Christian “friends” who express such sentiments. But since I’m not able to do that I’ll instead link to a few nationally known Christian pastors and leaders expressing such attitudes.
First up is Robert Jeffress defending and agreeing with President Trump’s questioning of why we accept immigrants from sh*thole countries:
Next we have Jack Hibbs warning against immigrants from Africa and the Middle East as threats to Americans because they carry disease:
And here we have one of Trump’s favorite spiritual advisors, Paula White, defending Trump’s policy to separate children from their parents as if it was biblical:
If one spends enough time googling, they can find tons and tons of stories like these.
I can’t believe you’re even questioning this.
There have been numerous studies…doesn’t take much to find them.
I could do this for hours, but I won’t…
I suspect, dunno, that only desperate folk are ripe for revival…🤔
Thank you for these 3 extreme examples. I’m no fan of Jack Hibbs, Robert Jeffries and especially Paula White. Let’s mark these individuals in the church and move on. I don’t see these 3 pastors as representative of the church in America by any stretch.
One more time…numerous polls have established the evangelical rights view on immigration.
There is no debate to be had.
I honestly don’t pay too much attention to polls. They are usually always biased. But I assume you are correct in your analysis. However are the views on immigration policy being conflated with individual attitudes on the refugee and immigrant in these polls? Do the polls even capture that or are they only looking at what policies are supported?
At this point it would seem you are choosing to be willfully ignorant. No one is saying that all or almost all Christians or evangelical Christians carry such beliefs and attitudes. But what is being said is that a very significant portion of them do, the evidence and examples of which are plentifully available, a small snapshot even having been provided for you here. What you want to write off as “extreme”, is very commonplace in today’s Christian culture.
My greatly missed mentor once said that border issues are impervious to facts.
You have established again his wisdom.
From one of the poll articles that Michael posted:
“68 percent of white evangelicals say America has no responsibility to house refugees.”
If one is a Christian and has any desire whatsoever for their country (especially one that is arguably the richest ever in world history) to act in “Christian” or “moral” or “biblical” ways, then they most certainly would want America to take at least some responsibility to house refugees. The fact that they don’t think by “policy” that America should take in refugees is not a conflation of individual attitudes, but rather flaming confirmation that they have attitudes that conflict with God’s teachings.
You would be amazed how many people listen to them and give those people credit, although I am not as up on Paula White. However, Jeffries is the pastor of one of the larger Southern Baptist churches in the country and he has a lot of connections with other Southern Baptist churches, not to mention the seminaries. Jack Hibbs’ “Real LIfe” ministry also reaches many people. They have much more influence than you may think, especially with people looking to have their particular bias confirmed from an outside source.
I was really surprised a few years ago at a dust-up that occurred in my own church on Facebook regarding children being kept in cages down by the border. What started as a fairly normal “this concerns me” post from a member turned into a multi-post battle over immigration, the country being taken over, the good and bad of the administration, etc. It was ugly. I was surprised at the anger expressed in many of the posts because my church is fairly multicultural with a growing Spanish congregation (and many undocumented). The congregation did receive some admonitions from the pulpit about respecting different opinions and not using social media to lambast each other, but it was still rather alarming.
There is a lot of “ugly” out there to contend with, and many angry people I continue to pray that the church at large would come back to the basics of the Gospel and learn to love their neighbors, whoever they may be.
Like I said in the very first post here I guess I have been fortunate. I haven’t been influenced by these people or had this kind of experience. Not denying it exists.
At the core of religious impulse is the sense of disgust. It manifests in the history of what is deemed clean and unclean. This long discussion is a reshuffling of that category. The disgust being vilified is the opposite of the disgust it is highlighting. As people shift from conservative to liberal their sense of disgust shifts with them.
We are all seeking to posture ourselves to be disgusted with the things that disgust heaven. We fail colossally. We are engulfed in a cultural revolution concerning disgust. Sexually the things that are now ascendant were once unthinkable. Children are being consumed by the linguistic shenanigans that express this.
We eschew, we tolerate, we embrace… all the while mocking the idea of a slippery slope.
But I digress, here in this ‘revival’ thread the ultimate theme is that the people with whom we once identified, we now are convinced that they are the Other. We must wash our hands of them.
“We eschew, we tolerate, we embrace… all the while mocking the idea of a slippery slope.
But I digress, here in this ‘revival’ thread the ultimate theme is that the people with whom we once identified, we now are convinced that they are the Other. We must wash our hands of them.”
My addition is, I’m concerned about the slippery slope of pointing in a demanding manner to a scriptural basis for conduct as a nation or maybe the intent is only a subset of believers in a nation and how this demanding manner is not a type of Christian tinged Ethnocentrism (or maybe there is a sway to the appeal of Christian Federalism where it was consistently debunked, dismissed under the guise of marginalizing all Christian Federalism under the banner of Christian nationalism). It seems this post makes us contend with the implementation of Biblical thesis for nationwide conduct toward a certain political quagmire.
But I may be misreading or infusing my own sensitivities into a premise that is perfectly absent any politicism or Christianity, for never the twain shall meet. Sometimes.
I’m always (somewhat) amused by the fact that conservative evangelicals want to apply “biblical” principles to every issue except immigration…
The Bible does not dictate border policy…but it does dictate what the heart attitude of the Christian (who is supposed to consider himself an exile) is to be.
I long ago gave up on our binary system to do justice and act in righteousness…and pretty much gave up on most of the church as well…and the latter is more tragic than the former.
I did not sense any disgust or vilification here.
I’m not washing my hands of anyone…who hasn’t washed their hands of me.
The journey from conservative to liberal…if I uphold a biblical view of sexuality and a biblical view of refugees…where am I on that journey?
“But I may be misreading or infusing my own sensitivities” – And that is exactly what you are doing.
I repeat what Michael just said: “The Bible does not dictate border policy…but it does dictate what the heart attitude of the Christian (who is supposed to consider himself an exile) is to be.”
My article is not about imposing policy onto a nation rather it is about the heart of the Christian.
If I would have written an article about Christians who wrongly devalue life in the womb and see it as expendable, would your reaction have been the same as it was to this article?
I can assure you that when I wrote this article, it was not written with any disgust or vilification or seeing what was family as now being the “Other”. Rather from a heart that feels shame and dismay by the actions of many of my family, yet with a glimmer of hope, I write to exhort my family with many prodigals to reorient themselves to God’s ways.
“We eschew, we tolerate, we embrace… all the while mocking the idea of a slippery slope.”
I think the slippery slope is far behind us. The American church in all of its varieties has embraced the secular culture and its values. Our standards of morality are no different than the population at large. I might add that embracing the culture is not a matter of right or left, or of some political persuasion… it is the fact that instead of informing the culture, we are allowing the culture to shape us and our values…
“it is the fact that instead of informing the culture, we are allowing the culture to shape us and our values” – Absolutely
On one side of the faith, we are allowing the culture’s values around sexuality, the nature of truth, and individualism to shape us. On the other side of the faith, we are allowing the culture’s values around combativeness, conspiracy, and individualism to shape us.
“If I would have written an article about Christians who wrongly devalue life in the womb and see it as expendable, would your reaction have been the same as it was to this article?”
I have always said of myself here and elsewhere that I am a one issue voter, and that issue is pro life. Here in this format on many occasions, I was dismissed for being so myopic (my word) on this single issue, often with the caveat – “we hear you, but abortion is the law of the land.”
So I have to shrug at the urgency here regarding immigration, because the law of the land, going back through every variation of two party leadership remains stalled at inadequately and cruelly dealing with immigration.
And that problem goes back to the devaluation of life in the womb, the enmity toward the fundamental image of God at the most basic point of humanity. So welcome to windmill tilting, but the tilt is a few years prior to the ability to immigrate. The issue is being given the right to life – a priori the right to liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
I will say that the pointed practicum that is shot back at me on dealing with a sudden infusion of new life – that is, I’m called pro-birth only rather than pro life as it is often insinuated that I do nothing to care for that life once that child is out of the womb, and that if the system collapses because I insist that 1 million plus babies be allowed to be born and there is an assumption of all their costs once liberated from the womb, then everyone suffers.
Likewise that is your challenge – if all these lives are liberated into this nation, if they proceed forth from the womb of oppression into freedom here in the US, how do you plan on keeping the entire system from collapse? Is it an unfair assumption on every front? Yep. Tough, ain’t it?
What you are advocating for and hope to do so without recrimination is a Christian Federalism where an allowance is made for those who want to live out their Christian conscience without being unduly regulated, limited, taxed, and inhibited by a behemoth government who stands between you and the exercise of the conscience.
That’s what I want, too – but because I have other Conservative minded ideologies, I’m lumped in as a jingoistic Christian Nationalist.
Like me, you’ll live through the mischaracterization and hurtful assumptions.
“Likewise that is your challenge – if all these lives are liberated into this nation, if they proceed forth from the womb of oppression into freedom here in the US, how do you plan on keeping the entire system from collapse? Is it an unfair assumption on every front? Yep. Tough, ain’t it?
What you are advocating for and hope to do so without recrimination is a Christian Federalism where an allowance is made for those who want to live out their Christian conscience without being unduly regulated, limited, taxed, and inhibited by a behemoth government who stands between you and the exercise of the conscience.”
Rob, my article has NOTHING to do with any of this. Your continued obsession to view my writing through a politically partisan lens causes you to see all kinds of things that aren’t there and an inability to see the things that are actually there.
Again, I REPEAT – My article is not about policy , nor does it have anything to do with expressing a desire for Christian Federalism. Rather, it is about the Christian and their heart’s attitude toward the migrant and immigration.
I’ll write more about this someday when I have a clearer mind…
Exiles do not make public policy.
Exiles live their lives and speak to the policy makers in a way that reflects the heart of God …it is a prophetic office speaking to power, not the power itself.
Thus…the Christian exile can live and advocate for a biblical view of sexuality and gender, the life of the unborn, and the lives of the refugees without the burden of pleasing either side of the American political binary…or caring about the labels those housed in those binaries choose to put upon us.
and that’s where our fundamental disconnect sits. I day the NT instructs us to live as shining lights in a crooked and perverse world and Paul sets as an example his own life of maximizing his opportunities as a citizen of heaven to assert himself also as a citizen of Rome to further the gospel and correct and influence unjust behavior. (acts 16)
the Christian can do more than just advocate, the Christian can and must act.
what do you do with those exiles in the Bible who took up making public policy and did so accordingto their faith? your assertion leaves out Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, Zerubbabel, then the commander of the Roman guard who lived out a faith so striking as to cause Jesus to say his faith was unparalleled in all Israel.
The existence of PP is to cause exiles to set apart the church for holiness to God and this requires getting our hands dirty with policies bot sacred and secular.
Jesus told us about the quandries of the Kingdom of God advancing and being opposed, it’s messy and it never aligns with our preferences, but what another poster and I have both seen, sensed, and observed – (this now my own biased observation) and this has dramatically shited /increased over the last four or five years – is the strange bias here at PP toward the same binary divisions that the authors here deride.
I just spent three months in the book of Daniel.
The entirety of his influence was based on how he lived his life, not on the setting of public policy.
He endured much persecution…and God delivered him because of his faithfulness, not because of political power.
The most interesting things about the book is the ending…that promises that oppressive empires will be the norm until the return of Christ.
Paul never advocated for regime change or public policy…except for believers.
As to bias…I get applauded for standing for traditional sexual values…and booed when I point out biblical values about immigration and refugees.
I stopped caring about 2014…I’m just trying to be faithful.
“is the strange bias here at PP toward the same binary divisions that the authors here deride.”
Maybe the bias isn’t so strange when one considers we are speaking to a community and a greater family we are part of that is primarily theologically conservative. Unfortunately, as we observe the binary divisions that exist in our larger culture, we see that our “family” is heavily inclined to join one side of that division, subsequently taking on God-dishonoring characteristics that are prevalent on that side. And since God also instructs us to be more concerned with behaviors within our own church family than with behaviors of outsiders, we choose to speak to those things.
So in the end, the bias isn’t so “strange”, it may even be biblical.
I should have said in my last comment, “we choose to speak *primarily* to those things”, as Michael points out we will also at times speak to things like traditional sexual values or the sanctity of the unborn.
And, yes, we get applause when we talk to those things. But our aim is not to gain applause, but rather to be faithful.
Delete this if it’s a violation of any sort, but the biased orthodoxy of this site’s editorial preferences to the public expression of faith can be summarized for me in this way. Many months back, the site highlighted with wicked work of human trafficking and provided copious links for the exiles to become involved and support various ministries and missions. I sent a note via email citing the work of Craig Sawyer and the organization Veterans For Child Rescue. The response I received indicated PP’s awareness of Sawyer and V4CR, but stated that the site would not commend the organization based on the political leanings of V4CR and Sawyer. I’m still looking through my email archives to give a direct quote.
But the idea that PP does not advocate for a particular resume of beliefs prior to doing works of conscience or faith, that there’s not an acceptable/unacceptable rubric and that this recent post that we are commenting on is in any way unbiased is unsupportable.
And that’s absolutely fine – this site has all editorial privileges for inclusion or exclusion of any content. But don’t think for a moment that you’re not issuing either/or binary / us v. them statements. That’s antithetical to all persuasive writing.
We will always disagree about the responsibility to act and engage as a believer – the prohibitions and the obligations for us fall into separate continents of opinion that offer no reconciliation or common ground. Irreconcilable differences are not new to the Gospel story, even within the Gospel story.
I love this!!
You’re entitled to believe anything you choose.
Kevin posted an article based on a biblical understanding of an issue.
He and I have both offered further clarity on what we believe and why.
I’m well aware that many believe I’m a “liberal” …except for when I’m not. I don’t know how they reconcile that, but it’s not my problem to solve.
I’ve never believed that the differences we have are irreconcilable…nor have I thought it was always an us vs. them scenario.
My job is to be faithful according to my understanding of the biblical text and church tradition…I fail at times, but I’m still trying.
What part do you love…the article or the rebuke? 🙂
Article and rebuke!
I’m not woke or progressive, or left or right. I follow God’s Word as much as I can, and often get into trouble when I express an opinion on something with either sider.
Perspective: Last night we launched our “official” ESL program at my church (I’m the grand poobah; i.e director). It’s small-about 15 students, but you could almost inhale the hope in the room. We had several women who can speak, but are not literate., one family that is recently over the border is from the recent “surge,” and others from the fall pilot program in the local apartment complex (we outgrew the space) who came back for a second round and moved up a level.
We did introductions, and one of the men from the fall pilot program, who turned red every time he was asked to say something in English. confidently introduced himself in three very distinct grammatically correct sentences. God validated all our hard work in that one introduction.
So, I keep up with the politics of immigration, but I also get involved as I can. Once you get to know people, find out why they are here, learn about all the issues about trying to survive in a country that isn’t “yours,” it really does change both your perspective and involvement. I think the same could be said of the pro-life movement. When people began to befriend women with unplanned pregnancies, instead of ostracizing them, they became “real” and the abortion rate did begin to decline. Jesus loves people more that our kibbitzing. Our government does need to solve the problem at the border in a humane way, but I’ve been waiting over 40 years (that’s all my time helping immigrants/refugees). However, it’s easy to help a neighbor fill out a form, find a class, or read with a child at school learning English. And, I personally believe it is the “Jesus way.”
Good word Linn.
Despite whatever policy conflicts people have the people of God are outstanding when face to face. The macro blinds us but human faces heal us and we become who we are. I’ve always contended that the people of God are better than their institutions.
“the people of God are outstanding when face to face. ”
Disagree. I’ve found them to be nightmarish.
Josh, nightmarish? Then they are NOT the people of. God… IMNSHO
I knew you were a teacher and as I said before, so is my wife. But what I didn’t know is you are an ESL teacher—and so is My wife.
I trained as a bilingual teacher in Spanish/English. Now I teach both Spanish and ESL (summer) in a private school. I love both, and I especially love using my skills to help others. Example: I translate sermons for our Spanish congregation when our pastor is away. ESL is a noble profession!