In this brief visit to the U.S., I’ve observed a profound transformation in Columbus, mirroring the rapid changes unfolding across America. In a mere five years, the familiar landscape of our people has shifted dramatically. Public parks, streets, and shopping centers once resonating with our beautiful English language, now echo with a clash of languages that is disuniting us. This sudden surge of diversity poses profound challenges to the American soul, both locally and nationally. The question lingers: are we truly united anymore when we can’t even understand our neighbors?
Take, for instance, my recent trip to the mall, which starkly underscores this shift. The seemingly simple task of finding a pair of pants turned into an unsettling experience as I found myself surrounded by a majority of individuals conversing in languages other than English. I literally couldn’t find anyone speaking English. It made me question – was I still in the USA? Even major retailers like JCPenney and Macy’s had a notable presence of foreign employees. At Walmart, two employees in the clothing departments didn’t speak English and I had to walk over to another section in search of an English-speaking staff member for assistance.
While I speak Spanish and can be considered ‘cultured,’ having traveled extensively abroad and lived in three foreign nations, I can’t help but feel a sense of unease witnessing millions of unaccounted people inundating my home country. I believe that many Americans share this sentiment. It is not a sentiment rooted in hatred or a desire for harm to befall anyone. Rather, it emerges from a heartbreak, recognizing the historical reality that nations have, at times, faced God’s judgment through the impouring of foreign people groups overtaking them.
History teaches us that the amalgamation of diverse cultures coexisting always poses an inherent threat to any nation. Conflicting languages, perceptions, values, traditions, etiquette, and social norms cohabiting never stand strong together. The mixing always gives rise to strife and weakens the fabric of a nation. The lessons from historical examples like Egypt, Rome, Ephesus, Babylon, Nineveh, Tyre, and many more serve as poignant reminders of the inherent impossibilities that accompany cultural mixing.
The widely embraced idea that America is a melting pot, urging us to actively blend conflicting cultures, is fraught with peril. This idealistic pursuit foretells the end from the beginning, the downfall of America, as it is impossible for conflicting cultures to unite in beliefs, customs, and manners in conducting affairs. As history tells us, a house divided cannot stand, and one teetering on division is on the brink of collapse, poised to implode from within.
Irrespective of our political affiliations, be it in support of Biden, Trump, or any other figure, the prevailing truth is the Lord's sovereignty is permitting the influx of massive groups of diverse people, both good and bad, to cross into our land. These shifts are unfolding under the watchful knowledge and control of God in our society.
Divine judgment is unfolding upon our nation as we find ourselves distanced from God to an extent where His rejection is becoming unmistakable. We have expelled Him from our schools, courthouses, government, and regrettably, even from many congregations. As a consequence, our separation from the Lord has rendered us weak and vulnerable, devoid of divine protection. The floodgates are now open, allowing people from all backgrounds to pour in.
The problems have escalated to the extent that tens of thousands of immigrants find themselves homeless in cities like NYC, Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas, San Francisco, and numerous small towns across America. This distressing situation raises a crucial question: Where are the churches, and where are the Christians? As followers of Christ, it is incumbent upon us to step forward as problem solvers, recognizing that the government will not solve this pressing situation.
As Christians, it is imperative for us to proactively engage in serving and ministering to these vulnerable populations, recognizing that millions of immigrants, like anyone else, have lost souls in need of the Savior. Moreover, we cannot overlook the millions facing financial poverty and homelessness who also require our care. The time has come for churches to rise up to address both the spiritual and practical needs of these individuals.
Christians in the United States must discern and understand God’s unfolding plan. We must respond in a godly sort: Fervent prayer at the forefront, where we humbly confess our sins, seek God's mercy, and forsake all wrongdoing in our personal lives. There is an urgent need for new ministries to emerge: we must serve the challenges faced by the immigrants. Engaging in evangelism efforts and reaching out to serve their physical needs is vital. So many of them come from places where they have never heard a clear presentation of the gospel, and it is our responsibility to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to them.
Whether you like it or not, the immigrants are now a part of our nation, and it is evident they are here to stay. Amidst the rapidly changing demographic landscape, our primary focus should be on reaching out to them for Christ.
The time has come for churches to reassess their financial priorities. Rather than investing resources in elaborate church buildings, a shift towards a more impactful use of funds is necessary. Redirecting financial resources to build local Immigration Family Centers, and orphanages, and actively caring for the hundreds of thousands of needy people in our communities would align with a compassionate and practical approach to fulfilling our Christian mission.
Extending our outreach to the borders and meeting immigrants with the message of Christ and service is not only crucial but represents a profound opportunity for the Church to make a lasting impact. As these individuals arrive in mass groups, for example, often bused to cities, our active presence at bus stations takes on a special significance. Waiting for them with open hearts of love and compassion becomes more than just a gesture – it becomes a tangible expression of our commitment to serve and connect with those in need.
At these bus stations, we can create welcoming spaces where immigrants are met not only with practical assistance but also with a genuine sense of belonging. Offering information about local resources, language support, and assistance with immediate needs such as food and shelter can be pivotal in their initial moments within our communities. This initial encounter sets the tone for a relationship built on compassion and understanding so that we can smoothly connect them to churches and Bible studies.
Churches should not only address immediate physical needs but also seek to foster spiritual discipleship. Engaging in conversations about Christ and eternal matters, providing spiritual guidance, and offering support in times of emotional distress can contribute to the holistic development of these individuals who may have faced significant challenges on their journey.
By extending our outreach in these comprehensive manners, we Christians can transform our churches into beacons of hope and support for immigrants, demonstrating the genuine love and care of Jesus Christ. It is through these intentional acts of kindness and advocacy that we fulfill our calling to be Christ's ambassadors on earth, actively participating in the restoration and redemption of lives.