Statistics from Global Frontier Missions:
Only about 1% of all refugees pass the application process and [are] allowed into places like the US.
There are about 15 million refugees worldwide.
The US settles between 30,000 to 70,000 refugees each year.
80% of all refugees living in the US have never been invited into an American home!
That last statement stunned me and saddened me. When I was volunteering with refugees, I never invited them to my home because after-hour time like that with students was prohibited, probably to keep me and the organization from getting sued for accusations of inappropriate student-teacher relationships. How I wish I could show hospitality now, though, that I’m no longer teaching. Refugees who have been resettled in a new country desperately need friends to show them the ropes–how to grocery shop, how to ride the bus, etc. But they also need friends to just be friends and invite them over to live life with them.
My current location is not a resettlement area, much to my disappointment. So I have to be content with urging others to use this incredible opportunity of sharing the gospel and your daily lives with people who will in turn enrich your lives so much as they bring a new culture and a new way of “seeing.”
May this be a Christmas season in which the joy of Christ is shared with others! If you, like me, don’t have refugees in your area, find others to whom you can show hospitality. People in your church, in your neighborhood, etc. Reach out to the homeless, the widows, and the orphans. It doesn’t matter if your home or family doesn’t resemble this Norman Rockwell painting at all. Remember: Christ did much more for us!