Morning thought 1 Monday June 14
Good morning Until I was asked to do morning thought for this week I had no idea but it is refugee week. The definition of a refugee that I found on The internet is “someone who due to a well grounded fear of persecution, war or violence has been forced to flee their home country”.
My own very limited experience of trying to help refugees through Mustard Seed Jersey goes back well over 20 years to the time of wars in former Yugoslavia.
I have done quite a lot of thinking back, looking at my records to see what I can remember from that time. One thing I do remember very clearly is how deeply disturbing it was to go to a refugee camp.
My first experience of a refugee camp was in the late 90s. People in Jersey had donated generously for the Bosnian refugees and we in Mustard Seed Jersey were working with a larger UK based charity. This organisation had managed to get our group of volunteers into one of the refugee camps in Macedonia. It was a huge camp. People were in enormous tents, no privacy though they had been put in family groups. I cannot remember what it was we were handing out to the refugees but what I do remember is feeling utterly overwhelmed.
In one of the tents through our translator we got talking with a family. They were professional people, forced to flee literally with what they wore and could easily carry.
Then the mother got up and went out to use the toilet tent. She took with her her towel and a tiny piece of soap. That piece of soap was all that remained of the bar of soap that she had brought with her. It was so small that normally I would’ve thrown it away but to her it was precious. You could see how precious it was by the way she held it in her hand.
We close this morning thought with a prayer for refugees
Grant a safe journey by land or sea Lord to those fleeing conflict warfare and persecution Where there is conflict sow love where there is hate sow kindness. Begin to put love within our hearts that the love we display might make a difference in this increasingly troubled world through Jesus Christ we pray.