Immigrant Hope Ministries
 

 HOW WIDE IS YOUR PAINTBRUSH?… AND OTHER RULES

Oh my, the rhetoric that surrounds the immigration debate can be so fierce! Here, in brief, are some of my rules for evaluating the debate and moving forward. 1. We are first and foremost citizens of heaven. If we are God’s children, then we follow His rules for citizens of the Kingdom. We find them in the Bible. And those rules say to love the poor, the widow, the orphan and the stranger (immigrant) and to love your neighbor as yourself. So, LOVE characterizes our outlook on all peoples 2. Vote your conscience. Secondarily, as citizens of this country, we have a voice and we should become in- formed and then vote for what we believe is right. When I speak to groups, I try hard to represent both sides of the issues but I encourage my listeners to also do the same. If we only hear from one voice, we might not be getting the full picture. But when informed, stand up and be counted. And then keep follow- ing rule #1. At no time should rule # 2 keep us from following rule #1. 3. Jesus would have some harsh things to say to both political parties. When I follow rule #1, my allegiance is to the Kingdom agenda and no one political party has a corner on the Kingdom agenda. I have to evaluate each issue with Kingdom rules and then follow rule #2. 4. Painting with too wide a brush puts everyone in the same category. There are countless stories of immi- grants who come to the United States. Hearing their stories, I have learned that the immigration land- scape has been and remains a complicated issue. When I hear of an immigrant who has done something rotten, I dare not globalize that to say “all are like that”. And when I hear of the sacrifice and patient en- durance of another immigrant, I dare not assume that all are like that. We ourselves do not like to be “labeled”. So we should be careful not to do the same to others. 5. Remembering rule #1 will never steer you wrong. I pray that the Lord helps me to stay close to His agenda. This goes for many of society’s issues today whether they are economic issues affecting the rich and the poor, educational issues, cultural norms re: sexual identity, right to life issues, the incarcerated, international affairs, etc. I Corinthians 13 …and the greatest of these is love Till next time
Roy and Judy Larsen 21 North 11th Street Allentown, PA 18101 610-730-5643
Note new personal e-mail address: (no longer @edaefca.org) New: roy.larsen5455@gmail.com

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Earning the Right to Share the Gospel Sometimes, it happens at the first appointment. Sometimes it is the second or third. And sometimes, we just plant seeds. But loving people as you provide a service for them is a powerful tool. JD is a U.S. citizen petitioning for her spouse to come from overseas. She was divorced from her first husband a few years ago and her life has been chaotic. It was about the 3rd or 4th appointment when she shared that she was having trouble sleeping and that her ex-husband had ties with voodoo and she believed he was putting a curse on her. I asked if she knew Jesus. “Our family always went to church”, she responded. She allowed me to share that we can’t inherit a relationship with Christ through others but that we each individually need to respond in faith to his invitation. I shared the plan of salvation and asked if she sincerely wanted to allow Christ in her life. She did and she prayed. She still has struggles and I continue to give her scripture to read and meditate on. Pray she will experience God’s power over any and all of Satan’s attacks. JJ and TJ are a delightful Polish couple in their 80’s. They were married for 29 years, divorced for 23 and then re-married about 3 years ago. I am helping them with the “proofs of a true marriage”. They were frustrated when USCIS did not accept their first set of proofs. They needed more. While frustrating for them, God used it to give us 2 more appointments together and at one of the appointments I gave them a book and a copy of the plan of salvation. At the next appointment I gave them The Case for Easter by Lee Strobel and was going to give them a copy of the plan of sal- vation. “Oh, you already gave us that…and we have read it many times”. Pray that they will internalize that message as they read more. She speaks English well but he does not, so she reads and translates into Polish MA came for a consultation. He was in the process of applying for a green card through marriage but his marriage was falling apart. He was clearly disturbed and was very reluctant to share details about himself. But part of our intake sheet deals with salary, religious background and how they heard about us. When asked about his religious back- ground , he said “XXXXXX, but I’m not sure what I believe”. By the end of the consult he allowed me to share that for us, Christianity is not a religion but a relationship with Jesus Christ. He took a New Testament and sincerely thanked me. I have invited him to come back. I hope he does. Pray that God will draw him to Himself by whatever means he chooses. I am reminded of the chain of planted seeds by one of our clients who said, “my dentist prayed for me”, when I also offered to pray for her. May we all be part of that chain with the contacts in our lives. Prayer and Praise *My co-worker Renee is experiencing unwanted growth in her cancer tumors with resulting weakness and discom- fort. She has started a new chemotherapy. Pray for God’s healing.

 

*My other co-worker, Birke, and her husband Christian, received the good news that their asylum application has been approved.
*Pray for our grandson Jude, The hole in his heart is still there but the heart is still functioning well enough to not schedule any surgery. We are still praying that the hole will close on its own.
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If you feel led to help support this ministry, donations can be made several ways.
 
By Check:
Checks made payable to Grace Community Church of New Tripoli and placed in the offering plate on Sunday mornings
 
*Please make sure to enter “Missions” on the subject line of the check or envelope*
 
Online Contributions:
        http://www.gccnt.org/give/
 
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