Starfish, Critics and the Syrian Crisis -- Which Person Represents You?

I'm not sure if you heard the story of the little boy who was seen throwing starfish back into the water. You see, a bunch of them had washed ashore and the boy was picking them up and tossing them back in. 

A man was amused and said, "What do you think you are doing? Look at all the starfish! You can't possibly save them all. What possible difference can you make?"

At first, the boy was discouraged but then he picked up another starfish and tossed it in. He looked at the man and responded, "I made a difference for that one!"

The plight of the persecuted church may seem similarly discouraging and overwhelming. Which represents your response? The little boy who makes a difference for some or the older man who shrugs and discourages any effort for the sheer magnitude of the problem?

Persecution on the upswing: do we care?

(Photos courtesy Voice of the Martyrs USA)

From the article: 

International (MNN) ― The Church is under fire. Upon reading that statement, half the people who started reading this article just moved on to something "more interesting."

And that response is troublesome.

The plight of believers gets little attention on the global stage, leaving many Christians throughout North America unaware and therefore indifferent to what's going on in the body of Christ.

Mention persecution, and eyes glaze over. Silence continues because not enough church leaders are talking about it from the pulpit. Although Barna Research states the opposite, many North American church leaders and pastors say their flocks don't want to hear such negative and depressing things.

Aid For Syrian Refugees

From the article:  The UN reports that more than half of all of the refugees pouring over the border from Syria are children, and thousands of youngsters have crossed unaccompanied or have been separated from their families during the journey.

Samaritan’s Purse has a team on the ground working with a local partner to provide emergency food and other supplies. We have delivered tons of relief commodities for distribution in two camps—one is home to around 15,000 refugees and the other around 4,000 people.

God is multiplying your gifts among Syrian refugees
September 5th, 2013
Baptist Global Response

Note: this article shows that even the threat of U.S. strikes is making the refugee crisis worse

“The majority of Syrian refugees are women and children and a few older men,” Palmer said. “Husbands, fathers, brothers and uncles stayed behind to protect their precious resources -- unfortunately, many times in vain. They were so thankful for the small amount of help we gave them. We promised we would be back the following week with more.”

An estimated 2 million refugees have fled Syria for neighboring countries, such as Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Iraq. The prospect of Western powers entering the conflict has dramatically increased the outflow in recent days, Palmer noted.

“Our relief and development efforts among the refugees are into the second year,” Palmer said. “To date, we have helped mobilize over $750,000 in relief goods to this crisis -- a small amount compared to the ongoing need, but we have been able to direct what we have to some key areas and through some key partners.”

So, will you pray?  What will you do?  Will you, like the boy on the beach, make a difference for that one?

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