The women of Moab are left like homeless birds
at the shallow crossings of the Arnon River.
“Help us,” they cry. “Defend us against our enemies.
Protect us from their relentless attack.
Do not betray us now that we have escaped.
Let our refugees stay among you.
Hide them from our enemies until the terror is past.”
The people of Moab have been under attack by a stronger enemy. Their cities have been leveled and the warriors have been killed. The survivors (mostly women and children) have had no other option but to flee their homes, taking whatever possessions they can carry with them. But where will they go? Where will they find safety? Who will open their doors and welcome them?
This is the plight of refugees. They can only hope that someone will be merciful and kind. They can only hope that there will be someone who will weep with them and then take action to protect them.
Historian Richard Breitman has chronicled Otto Frank’s painstaking efforts to seek refuge in the U.S. to protect his family from the Nazi’s Final Solution. At every turn, he was frustrated despite having business connections and family in the U.S.. His application was denied multiple times. Later, he, his wife and two children were arrested and sent to a concentration camp where all but Otto were killed. Otto Frank later published his daughter, Ann’s, diary. She died at age 15.
Question for Reflection
A poll taken on January 20, 1939, asked Americans if the U.S. government should allow 10,000 children–many of them Jewish–entry into the U.S. to be cared for in American homes. 61% responded “NO.” Why do you think there was an unwillingness to help?
How would you respond to those who now say that we should not allow Muslim refugees into this country?