When the Refugees fled Syria they left clutching their children to them, everything they owned on their backs, and took to the sea in rafts filled beyond capacity with desperate people seeking sanctuary from the horrors they had been living through. Some turned them away and they had to keep going, news stories showed children washed on shores who slipped from their parent’s clutch somewhere in the seas. We saw footage of people walking across countries; tired and grieving.
I remember hearing people say that they refugees had iPhones and so they must not be in terrible need. I imagine if I had to flee my home tonight with my child what I would pack, my phone would definitely be on the list. I imagine trying to hold onto someone’s hand while soaked from the sea and the weather. I cannot bear to think of the loss I would feel if that hand slipped from my own.
13 Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. 14 The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
The crisis of Syria, and so many refugees, reminds me of the Exodus from Egypt. How must it have felt for famiies who had been living enslaved to the Pharoh to follow Moses? They packed their unleavened breads, their children, and put their trust in this man to save them from their fate. When they reached the Red Sea, the Pharoh was chasing them with his army. A miracle allowed Moses to part the sea for their crossing and theirs alone.
The miracle of parting the sea is very much alive today. It is unfolding with each of us. It is alive in the volunteers who work with refugees to provide shelter, food, water, and aid. It is alive in the people donating to help these people find safe passage to a better life. It is alive every time we take in refugees into our countries, churches, and homes. The miracle lives in human hands.
Peter Mayer’s song Holy Now reminds us that miracles are everywhere – our very existence is a miracle. The Catholic folk song, Go Make a Difference (found here) tells us we are the face of God and the hands of Christ to make a difference in the world. We humans are the ones to bring about the miracles on earth. It is up to us to care deeply for one another.
What will you do as you walk the desert, as you wade the waters, as you cross the seas? Whose hand are you reaching for? Where can you make a difference?
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