Grief

‘We The People’, like it or not, have collectively been shoved into an unflattering spotlight on the world stage. At first I thought what I was seeing online was fake news. To my horror and shame, it isn’t. I’ve been in a funk over it all day. The best way to describe how it feels is grief.

im·mi·gra·tion

ˌiməˈɡrāSH(ə)n/

noun

1. the action of coming to live permanently in a foreign country.

Politics are not my thing. Jesus is. But if our administration is talking about immigration this post reluctantly falls in that category. When you boil it down, immigration is about people. Human beings made in the image of God.

Lord help us, since before Methuselah there’s been racism and hatred between tribes,people groups and countries. Sad to say if you watch the 6:00 o’clock news, humanity hasn’t changed much … but I digress.

My family of origin fled a foreign country seeking asylum, freedom from tyranny, oppression and communism. They came here with nothing but their smarts, work ethic, integrity, hope for the future and the clothes on their backs. That means my parents were immigrants. That makes me a first generation American. I was conceived in Cuba and born and raised in the USA by the grace of God and the system who let my parents in. Politics and faith aside, just the fact that my parents were refugees makes the subject of immigration personal.

The US had policies in place to control the flow in the 1950’s, and I believe we should now as well. But had the administration at the time smeared Cuba and her people as unfit, unworthy and unwanted like ….. well, my story might have been radically different. Chances are, unless you are 100% pure Native American, yours might be too.

I’ve been blessed to have traveled outside our borders. I’ve met beautiful, compassionate, intelligent, loving, hardworking, capable people of different colors, nationalities and ethnicities. These folks have hopes and dreams, families, joys and sorrows just like me and you. Their beautiful lands, mountains, oceans, flora and fauna were created by the same One who created it all. How magnificent and humbling it is to have gone and experienced other countries and cultures so different from the one I call home.

God specifically used two visits to Haiti to touch my heart in ways I can’t describe. I have been forever changed as a result. How I grieve for my friends there, in light of reckless, wounding words that can’t be taken back. I hope they know that the words expressed by one man do not reflect the hearts of the majority here.

My prayer is that God will cover the men and women that we elected in into positions of leadership and authority with His wisdom and grace. May He guide their hearts and minds so that our country continues to be a place of refuge, freedom and hope for those who seek to make a life here.

“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!”

The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, Inc.

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