Caught in the Middle East Wars
As I and the rest of the congregation at my church celebrated our pastor’s anniversary yesterday, I could not help but think of those who pray for God’s mercy as we prayed thanks to Him. It seemed so sad that those in many areas of the Middle East must on a daily basis beg for grace.
Because I live in Michigan, a state still recovering from a recession after 9/11, thoughts of the jobless, homeless, out placed, under paid, the current health crisis and crime wave, and a myriad of other issues concerning residents here, the wars in the Middle East seem so inconsequential.
But the issues of the other side of the Atlantic ocean affects us all. Michigan is home to one of the largest gatherings of practicing Muslims, Shiities and Sunnis. Contrary to how the rest of the country may feel about wars in the Middle East, Michiganians must find peace while the wars are staged.
With many of those of the Islamic faith residing in southeast Michigan possessing much power in their belief and practice, turning an open eye away from the religious wars in the Middle East is a horrific disaster waiting to happen, again. The circumstances of 9/11 were only warnings of the possibilities by zealous Muslims. The sad part is, they most likely are only a very small percentage with very large capabilities.
So what can we do? I really don’t know and I can tell you why. I have spoken with many of the Islamic faith. I have read as much material as I can to get a better understanding of the discord. Yet, I still see what looks like a Hatfield/McCoy fight. Traditions that started centuries ago and are not yet resolved. Each generation carrying on a story told and revised along the way because no one knows the original truth. Like the Hatfield/McCoy feud, no one wants to be the first to stop the conflict. No one wants to follow God’s philosophy to love each other.
I remember while growing up a simple phrase repeated by family members, educators, evangelists, and neighbors. It didn’t matter what the discussions entailed or how many disagreements were displayed, it all came back to the same words.
Ye, who are without sin, cast the first stone. In the Middle East, it looks to me that many firmly believe they have committed no sins. So I find myself asking one question, what can I do? Answer? Pray.