Prayer: Lord, help me to love the immigrants in our midst.
Reading: Leviticus 19:33-34
33 Don’t mistreat any foreigners who live in your land. 34 Instead, treat them as well as you treat citizens and love them as much as you love yourself. Remember, you were once foreigners in the land of Egypt. I am the Lord your God.
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: The curriculum on day 4 this summer at camp encourages us to love our family, friends and neighbors. The main text is the first 18 verses of Ruth in which Naomi is left in a foreign land with no husband and no sons, just her daughters-in-law, Orpah and Ruth. We know that story—Orpah stayed in Moab, but Ruth traveled back to Judah with her mother-in-law showing Naomi incredible love. Today we consider another way that we are called to love.
We hear so much about what we should do with the people who cross our southern borders from Latin America. Immigrants. Some want them all deported. Some want barriers built anywhere they cross into the United States. Many perceive them as a threat. Many call them unfriendly, unwelcoming names
How differently God instructed the Hebrews camped at the base of Mount Sinai. Today’s text was received along with the Ten Commandments and many other instructions for living in community. God tells the Hebrews to treat the foreigners (immigrants in some translations) “as you treat citizens.” And God goes on, “love them as much as you love yourself.”
These words probably won’t affect our national policy toward the immigrants among us. But, I hope that today we personally take God’s words to heart and resolve to stand with the immigrants who reside in the United States. I don’t see that there is another option. --Jim Bricker, Chaplain to Camp Mount Luther’s Summer Staff
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