The plight of refugees has become deeply political. Our politicians have a tough job making decisions on how best to respond to the needs of millions of displaced people. But for my family and I (and some friends from our church), refugees have become deeply personal.
We recently joined a “Welcome Team” through a local organization called Refuge Louisville. It’s because Jesus first loved us that we’re compelled to show love to others.
In February we were at the airport to welcome a family to Louisville. As the days have passed and we’ve spent time with this family, our love for them has grown. During our latest visit we were talking as best we could despite a significant language barrier. We took time to read stories to the children, which they really enjoyed, and learned more about this family’s story.
Here are some things we’ve learned so far by getting to know one refugee family:
- Refugees have dreams and aspirations for the future, just like you and me.
- Refugees have experienced some extremely difficult life circumstances, through no choice of their own.
- Love is an international language.
- Regardless of our political beliefs about whether refugees should come into our country, there are many already here. Followers of Jesus should feel compelled to reflect his love to all people.
- We have been blessed by extending ourselves to get to know this family. Honestly (and pathetically), our big sacrifice in joining a Welcome Team was giving up some of our time. I’m pretty selfish with time. After each visit I am reminded that spending time with this family brings me joy and connects me to something bigger than myself. I need that.
This article is a republication from Brad Ricca. Used with permission.
Photo credit: WBUR