This is the second post on my reflections on the sermon I heard last Sunday. Seeing as today is Friday, I’m still in time!
The last post was about Samson, one of the Israelite judges. During this time period, the people of God often fell into the sin of idolatry (as well as other things). The 21st-century person of God is more likely to value money, status, fame etc more than a statuette; this we know. The guest preacher (our pastor’s away for a few weeks) put it this way: idolatry is finding your meaning in something other than God.
So far, nothing eye-popping. Then he prefaced what he was about to say by saying that he may offend some present (if he hadn’t done so already). Among the idolaters were those who were in the country illegally, having come in legally and having overstayed their visa. They were in that category because they pinned their hopes for their well-being on being in Italy (as opposed to being in their home country) , instead of putting their hope in God. To use a cliché, the silence was deafening.
I’d never thought of it that way. I thought being a clandestino (the Italian term for an illegal immigrant) was an infraction of moral and legal laws, but not of spiritual ones. Thinking about it, if it isn’t idolatry, then it is in the least an offense to God Almighty. I mean, the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it (Ps 24:1), nor can we escape His sphere of influence (Ps 139:7-12). It then follows that He can bless you in whichever hemisphere of the globe you find yourself.
Unlike me, the preacher had a personal experience in this matter from which to draw from. His son had to leave the country, leaving his family and home when his visa expired and a request for a permanent stay document wasn’t granted. A cynic may point out that the young man was returning to America, but I shan’t dwell on that. I can only hope that if I’m ever in a similar situation, I will glorify God in my actions.