Building Walls

There has been a lot of talk about putting up a wall along our southern border. The idea didn’t start with the new administration. It goes way back. “There’s nothing new under the sun,” as King Solomon said. Mankind has been building walls for centuries; around cities and castles, along borders. We have plenty of examples.

The Great Wall of China can be seen from space. Invaders figured out how to go around it. God told Joshua how to bring the walls of Jericho tumbling down. The walls of Babylon are long gone, the civilization with it. How about the walls of Troy? The Greeks couldn’t break through, but they knew how to get the Trojans to open the gate. Pretense and a gift. The Berlin Wall was built after World War II, to keep people in. People still found a way out to freedom, and eventually, the wall was torn down. Pieces of it are now sold as souvenirs.

America isn’t the only country arguing about whether to put up a wall or not. I’ve read several articles from the NY Times and LA Times lately. Countries in the EU are now finding themselves caught up in crisis-mode of what to do about the mass of migrants and the culture clashes with long-held European values of tolerance. Sweden is tightening their migration laws. Britain is pulling out of the EU and financing a barrier in Calais to prevent refugees from entering. Norway is building a fence along its arctic border with Russia. Italy is using Libyans to keep refugees on their boats and off the Italian shore. Hungary built a barrier along its border with Serbia and Croatia. Bulgaria has a fence along the Turkish border. Germany is taking a tougher stand, and France is growing alarmed at the number of unemployed, poor immigrants pouring in and receiving government-funded health care. The Balkans are closing off routes of entry. Central and Eastern Europe (EU countries) are trying to stop the influx of migrants because they can’t afford to shelter them.

This morning I read how the Mexican government is sending $50M for legal aid to help illegal aliens from Mexico to stay in America. The cynic might say Mexico wants us to keep all their criminals. I’ve met Latinos who work hard and send a sizable chunk of their earnings to family members south of the border. My German naturalized U.S. citizen Grandfather sent money to Germany to support family members. Rick’s grandmother and grandfather sent money to Sweden to help others come to America.

Yes, some come to destroy, but I believe the majority long for freedom, work that will support their families, a better future for their children. But I think there’s more going on right now. A massive human migration. Who has the power to change borders and move populations? Who can make one nation rise to power and another fall over night? (Read the Book of Daniel.)

A towering corroding copper statue stands at the entrance of the New York harbor, Lady Liberty holding up her light. “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden shore.” Those words could have been said with more truth by Someone else far greater than any man on earth.

America is imperfect, as is every other nation on the planet. The One who moves populations sent Jesus to make the way to the golden shores of Heaven. In Christ, anyone, anywhere, anytime can breathe free, have purpose, and be a citizen welcomed, loved and valued, along with the promise of an eternal home. Man’s hunger and longing will never be fulfilled by a change of location or hoped-for opportunity. All our needs and the blessings we long to receive, even beyond what we ask or seek, can only be found in an intimate relationship with our Creator and Redeemer, Jesus Christ our Lord..