All posts by Mary Kaech
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My Refugee Neighbors..

July 10, 2014 No Comments 10

I’ll never forget last summer when an old man came to my front door in the blazing heat of the desert, face sweating and hands shaking. He desperately asked if he could pull our weeds for some money, and I cold-heartedly sent him away and shut the door. It was because his presence made me too uncomfortable and I just wanted him out of my sight. That was a sin, I believe, and I am forgiven even though it still hurts. I know I’m not the only one who struggles with the volume of need in our world and what I can actually do about it. My friend Geeta, who works with Reconciled World in India, reminded me last week that every follower of Jesus is held accountable for his or her own corner—we are not responsible for the whole world. What freedom! At the same time, “every little bit counts … we just need to keep doing what we are called to do,” she said. I’d like to tell you a bit about my corner of the world and what I’ve learned from loving my refugee neighbors. My city, Phoenix, receives more than 2,000 refugees every year. Refugees, like Jesus and his parents when they fled Bethlehem, were forced to flee their homes due to persecution, often violently inflicted by their own governments. The U.S. welcomes more refugees to resettle in its cities and towns than any other country in the world, which makes me very proud, but the resettlement process itself is difficult for everyone who goes through it. Psychology experts actually call resettlement the third phase in the “Triple Trauma Paradigm” because it brings so many challenges including economic poverty, language barriers, social isolation and, very often, deep valleys of loneliness. One of the three biggest things I’ve learned by loving my...

I’ll never forget last summer when an old man came to my front door in the blazing heat of the desert, face sweating and hands shaking. He desperately asked if he could pull our weeds for some money, and I cold-heartedly sent him away and shut the door. It was because his presence made me too uncomfortable and I just wanted him out of my sight. That was a sin, I believe, and I am forgiven even though it still hurts. I know I’m not the only one who struggles with the volume of need in our world and what I can actually do about it. My friend Geeta, who works with Reconciled World in India, reminded me last week that every follower of Jesus is held accountable for his or her own corner—we are not responsible for the whole world. What freedom! At the same time, “every little bit counts … we just need to keep doing what we are called to do,” she said. I’d like to tell you a bit about my corner of the world and what I’ve learned from loving my refugee neighbors. My city, Phoenix, receives more than 2,000 refugees every year. Refugees, like Jesus and his parents...

I’ll never forget last summer when an old man came to my front door in the blazing heat of the desert, face sweating and hands shaking. He desperately asked if he could pull our weeds for some money, and I cold-heartedly sent him away and shut the door. It was because his presence made me too uncomfortable and I just wanted him out of my sight. That was a sin, I believe, and I am forgiven even though it still hurts. I know I’m not the only one who struggles with the volume of need in our world and what I can...

I’ll never forget last summer when an old man came to my front door in the blazing heat of the desert, face sweating and hands shaking. He desperately asked if he could pull our weeds for some money, and I cold-heartedly sent him away and shut the door. It was because...

I’ll never forget last summer when an old man came to my front door in the blazing heat of the desert, face sweating and hands...

I’ll never forget last summer when an old man came to my front door in the blazing heat of the desert, face sweating and hands shaking. He desperately asked if he could pull our weeds for some money, and I cold-heartedly sent him away and shut the door. It was because his presence made me too uncomfortable and I just wanted him out of my sight. That was a sin, I believe, and I am forgiven even though it still hurts. I know I’m not the only one who struggles with the volume of need in our world and what I can...

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