We cannot help but be moved by the suffering of refugees. Having past experience working in missions, I came to realize a little of the emotional upheaval and turmoil when a family is forced to leave their home, perhaps with ten minutes notice. What do you take? What do you leave? Most left everything because their lives, and those of their families, were more precious than any possessions.
What a mess in Syria? A quarter of a million people have now fled the country. Through no fault of their own, they have been driven out by tanks, bombs and the threat of death. Some of them had to leave dead family members behind unburied. Most have escaped with nothing more than the clothes in which they were dressed. Now they are forced to totally rely upon the goodness of others to feed them and care for them.
Why are so many people starving in Africa when there really is enough food in the world for everyone? Is that not unjust? Why so many power-hungry guerilla groups which seek to bring down governments at the unjustly cost of thousands of lives? On the other side of the coin, how is it that we recently saw one country give a young man a one year sentence for killing another young person, and even that sentence was reduced by time waiting for the trial? How is it that in another country a man gets 21 years in prison for killing 79 people? We seem to live in an age of injustice, where the suffering of the innocent is ignored.
Did you know that God has something to say about this issue? Proverbs says that “Acquitting the guilty and condemning the innocent—the Lord detests them both.” Injustice is an abomination to God.
The death of one person is a tragedy. The death of hundreds is deplorable and of thousands is inexcusable. It will not be until the evilness of man’s inhumanity to man and his insatiable hunger for greed, power and domination is recognized, that very little will change. The problem lies within the heart of man and that is where the change needs to occur.
What can we do about it? Our efforts may seem minimal but they are nonetheless important. When I was in missions someone actually said to me “Why do you bother, there is so much poverty, so much starvation and there are so many refugees, surely your efforts make very little impact?” My answer was “People suffer one at a time and we can help them one at a time!”
The small effort of many people makes a huge difference. So check out what you can do. If you are not already doing so, get behind a mission or organization which is helping to alleviate the suffering. You will be glad you did. It may help to share this and pass it to others so that they also have the opportunity to play their part.