Friday, May 26, 2017

Beyond Borders

Jesus loves the little children
All the children of the world
Red and yellow, black and white
They are precious in His sight
Jesus loves the little children of the world.

I need to write about something I encountered a few months ago. I was so taken aback at the time that it happened that I really didn't have words to write.

Anyone that is friends with me on social media is most likely accustomed to me sharing articles and posts about sexual assault and human trafficking advocacy and a few months ago was no different when I shared a post of a celebrity who plays a big part of working in the world of rescuing children from human trafficking. You may know the celebrity I'm referring to but I don't even want to get into that. You may or may not like them, and again, I don't want to get into that. Because, quite frankly, it really doesn't matter.

Whatever anyone's opinion of the person, the words he spoke in the video I shared about the huge problem of human trafficking were very true. But then came some comments from someone that when you summed them all up (and subtracted the personal opinions about the celebrity because again that's not important), the comments basically said that we should only worry about taking care of American children and not worry about children anywhere else.

I was completely shocked. I'm pretty sure I had to scoop my jaw up off of the floor. Y'all I love my country. No it's not perfect and I will advocate for change where I think it is needed, but at the end of the day, I do love my country. But I also love people. I love children. And I love Jesus. And I can't fathom someone not caring about a child just because they aren't in America. 

My love for Jesus has to come first. And because my love for Jesus has to come first, my love for people has to come next. All people. I struggled and struggled with a heart that felt that any child is any less worthy of life and love than my own girls simply because of where they were born. Y'all it broke me. Because you hear about these things but to actually see someone's heart convicted with those beliefs broke my heart.

All I could think about were the precious Haitian children that I was so blessed to spend time with for a week a few months before and that my husband and I are preparing to go back to. 

"A worldview bound by borders is outdated."

I saw this quote on Pinterest last night and it got my heart stirring again about this encounter from months ago. Not only is a worldview bound by borders outdated, but it's not Biblical. 

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit...
~Matthew 28:19

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all of Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
~Acts 1:8

He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to all creation."
~Mark 16:15

For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?
~Romans 10:13-14

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.
~John 3:16

For God so loved the world. He didn't just love the country you live in. He didn't just command us to love and take care of those in our country or our state or our neighborhood. Everyone. 

This isn't a political discussion. This isn't a post about what our country should do with finances. This is a post about me; a post about you; a post about any individual who claims to follow Christ and what that means.

Nowhere in the Bible are we bound by borders. Rather, we are charged to cross borders. Whether its a border of race, religion, socioeconomic status, a country border, an ocean, and on and on and on. If you and I claim to love and follow Jesus, we are called to carry that love and that passion and that purpose beyond any border. 

"Don't settle for the American Dream when God is offering you the Great Commission."
~Eric Simmons

I'm not saying every single person is called to get on an airplane and go overseas. What I am saying, is that no matter where God calls you to go, you are to go. What I am saying is that we are called to love one another as Christ loved us. We are called to recognize that when we are commanded to "love our neighbors as ourself" the word "neighbor" is not limited to those who live next door, or in our town, or our state, or our country. The word "neighbor" is not bound only to those who share our values and beliefs. It has no boundaries. When we put boundaries on our love for other people we are trying to put boundaries on a limitless love by a God who gave everything for every single person. Every. Single. One. We are called to love when others would understand if we didn't. We are called to forgive when no one expects us to. We are called to give beyond human expectations. We are called to go beyond any border. We are called to serve the least of these. 

"We have taken the command of Christ to go, baptize, and teach all nations, and mutated it into a comfortable call to come, be baptized, and sit in one location."
~David Platt

I used the example of the human trafficking post above not because I want to go on the attack against anyone who feels that way, but because I want to challenge you and challenge myself. I'm not perfect. I wish I could tell you that I had never tried to put limits on where I would be willing to go for the sake of Christ. So this is a challenge and a reminder to myself as well. But friend, let's you and I look deep in our hearts and see where we are placing limits, intentionally or not, on the limitless love of a God who isn't bound my any borders or limits.

I started this post with that simple song that I used to sing as a child because sometimes going back to the simple songs we sing to our children can remind us that too often we complicate the Great Commission. We add all of these components like politics or personal feelings & opinions that shouldn't be there. Love. Go. Share. Love. 

"The price is certainly high for people who don't know Christ and who live in a world where Christians shrink back from self-denying faith and settle into self-indulging faith. While Christians choose to spend their lives fulfilling the American dream instead of giving their lives to proclaiming the kingdom of God, literally billions in need of the Gospel remain in the dark."
~David Platt
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