Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest….I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. – Jesus
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she with silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” – “New Colossus” by Emma Lazarus, on a plaque at the base of The Statue of Liberty.
Immigration. The very origin of the “American” species. Even as I type that I wonder what the American Indian has to say about that…..
In a time in our country where the word “illegal” has become a noun, it is a worthy expedition to see what scripture might have to say about this issue.
It is an amazing correlation, the two quotes above. I am so inspired by the men and women who founded this great nation. Their perspective. their mentality, shaped by God’s heart. Today, instead of scripture guiding our opinion, we use scripture to justify our opinion. A gross error.
The heart of Jesus is that people come. Those tired and burdened by the weight of sin. People engaged in a lifestyle out of sync with their original design find freedom in His love.
The heart of America differs little. Our populace grew from a tide of masses burdened by tyranny and decrepit economy. With hope in their heart, this burgeoning nation offered them a new start.
Generations have passed and still this nation is that beacon of hope and freedom. Millions across the globe dream of a life that millions of us Americans take for granted.
And so, they still come.
I am convinced that despite our national debt and crumbling character, we enjoy the blessing of the Lord because of our heart for the alien. We have been the greatest world benefactor both in our financial aid to nations as well as in providing refuge to the foreigner.
To make our door harder to pass through is not in keeping with this blessing or the heart of the Father.
There is a great threat in our nation. But it is not the immigrant. I submit to you, just like when the first ones arrived on our shores, they are our greatest hope.
The threat lies within those who have been here for generations. Those so far removed from their ancestors gripped by hope for a new beginning. Those teeming with vigor, zeal and promise.
Now, these great ones’ descendants live with a growing sense of entitlement. Hard work, taking a risk, selling it all are becoming thoughts as foreign as deep space. These are the ones who saddle our economy and future with a great weight.
I am convinced that our focus is in the wrong place. A study of any fallen empire will reveal that the enemy within was greater than the one without. Fortifying the walls and reinforcing the gates distracts us from the greater work needed within.
Yes, there should be laws to enter and assimilate into our country. There is only one way to the Father – Jesus. A simple, clear requirement. A clear and simple path to citizenship is necessary. Unfortunately, what can be simple is complicated by a bloated bureaucracy empowered by an entitled citizenry.
As both a son of God and American citizen, I am burdened by this growing reality. The generations living in our nation today are threatened by a foreign workforce willing to work twice as hard for half of what they expect to be paid. And we wonder why American businesses seek manufacturing asylum in foreign lands?
Some will read this and say its more complicated than that. And therein lies the problem. We must learn to live in the blessing. Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. Where an American says there is no or limited opportunity, a foreign, hope-filled person makes a fortune.
On a personal note, every time I’ve traveled overseas to bless, every time I welcomed a stranger, I received more than I gave. This is a fact I am willing to bet most who read this can attest to. What we have experienced personally can continue to be the blessing our nation enjoys.
May the cry of Jesus to “Come!” overwhelm our sense of entitlement and self-protection. May we realize that a mentality of stronger walls and heavier locks keep us from the blessing.