I Didn’t Know…
Yet sometimes, I have to say something. It is for this reason I have chosen to join my sisters in Christ on this blog that challenges and urges those who read it to think and then react. The other writers of this blog are my precious sisters in Christ. We don’t agree on everything. But to the best of my understanding, unity does not mean agreeing on every jot and tittle of life, our faith, or politics. And so, I must, like a voice in the wilderness, cry out. I am Vociferor.
In a recent commentary about the murders in Egypt a friend of mine recently implied in her writing that Jews are more than a religion but a people, because they oppose abuse of their own worldwide, while Christians and Muslims are silent. I have not been able to shake what my friend wrote. I know that she is passionate, and I know she didn’t mean that Christians or Muslims feel less… but to me her words also reflected a deep ignorance at how people grieve.
I cannot speak for the Muslim people—I was not born into their people or culture. But I can speak for Christians. I know we grieve, but our grief is not of this world. Our battle is not against flesh and blood but against powers and principalities, and we take our grief to God and battle where the battle is real, in the waging of prayer, night and day, in tears, cries, and groans inspired by the Holy Spirit.
I found out yesterday, from an Arab Christian friend here in Israel, that she is in contact with people who have passed on terrible reports about what is going on in the Sinai. ISIS has been actively killing Christians in the Sinai for a while now, and a church leader came home from church one day, was ambushed and beheaded.
And I didn’t know.
I didn’t know.
I didn’t know.
I admit, I try not to read much news these days. It is far too depressing. I mean news from anywhere: Israel, the USA, Europe… But I do listen to the talk and my congregation gets reports from Jordan and Syria, and we remember to pray for our family in Christ there… but I did not know about what is going on just a few hours' drive away from me.
While everyone is arguing about Israel closing the border to Sinai for the Passover holiday, I did some more reading and realized they are very concerned about ISIS coming into Israel from there.
Today a friend of mine shared something I’d never thought of before. She encourages Arab Christians to go into the Israeli army so that they can learn how to defend themselves. She believes they are sitting ducks should ISIS get into Israel, particularly those living in remote villages.
Have we really come to that? I as an Israeli sleep safe in my bed without fear while my neighbors may not have another day, because my residence and city is better protected than theirs?
I am not going to point a finger at anyone. Politics is just plain dirty business. I have never believed in the ultimate integrity of the political process. But where is the body of Christ at this time? Why are we divided by race when our citizenship is in heaven? Why aren’t our young Messianic soldiers outraged at the danger their Arab brothers and sisters could be facing and seeking to help them?
Maybe they are; I don’t know. There is so much I don’t know.
Only of this I am certain, when one member of the body hurts, the whole body hurt. The Messianic body is in denial of its pain as we ignore, fail to relate to, and do not take up the cause of our brothers and sisters in Christ.
I am thankful that my congregation does not have its head in the sand. But despite their example, I realize I have a long way to go in considering the needs and pain of my sisters and brothers in Christ and their suffering. I don’t want to, but I guess I’m going to be reading the news more… praying more… and should God bring an opportunity for me to help, may I be willing.
Vociferor is Latin for to cry, cry out, shout, or yell. I have chosen this pen name when I send a guest post for primarily one reason—most of the people who know me have no idea how passionately I feel about some of the issues I don’t write about—particularly regarding politics. I hate polarization, but I am watching people’s pride in their heritage overshadow scripture, and quite truthfully, it makes me sick. Sometimes I want to scream, to shout, or to yell. But so many people will either ignore my voice, try to talk some sense into my head, or accuse me of being an emotional woman who is not understanding scripture correctly.