The refugee crisis is barely mentioned in the news now – the main headlines are about Brexit, Christmas sales, local political events and if migrants are featured, it is usually in South America.
Yet millions of refugees are stuck in limbo on the southern side of Europe and in the Middle East and North Africa.
85% of refugees remain in developing countries – Lebanon and Turkey host huge populations of supposedly-temporary people. Yet there seems to be little hope that they will be given new homes.
“…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.”
So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, 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.”
Jesus is no stranger to fleeing trouble – his family had to escape Herod by moving in the middle of the night to Egypt.
But this passage provides more than just an example of how God can empathise with refugees. It shows that he is still in control. Whilst it may have seemed chaotic and bewildering to Joseph and Mary, God knew this would happen. It had been foretold centuries beforehand.
Regardless of what the world and our politicians are doing (or not doing) for refugees, migrants and displaced people this Christmas, we can still declare that God is still in control. Whilst the ‘big picture’ seems to us so awful, we can trust that he is working in the micro – in individual lives being saved – and he is working to an even bigger picture than we can dream of.
Today’s actions; GO and SERVE in two ways;
- Visit your local refugee centre or support group, and see how you can help them.
Can you distribute flyers for events? Can you support them financially, or with material provisions? Can you offer assistance yourself?
- Ask us for a campaign pack to put in your church – get your church family praying with us for refugees and migrants
Praise God that some of the first people to worship Jesus were Gentiles, ordinary shepherds and herdsmen!
Thank God that he is still in control; that he protected the lives of Mary, Joseph and Jesus 2,000 years ago, and that even if we don’t understand what is going on around us, we can trust him.
Pray that God would turn the hearts of unbelievers to him, and draw close to them. Pray that those who would wish harm on Christians or church members would be dissuaded by his Spirit, and that they’d instead repent and turn to Christ as Lord.