Lessons from Moria

Anne Martin

O Lord hear my prayer, listen to my cry for mercy; your faithfulness and righteousness come to my relief. (Psalm 143)

On day three of our work schedule at Moria, a massive, overcrowded refugee camp on the island of Lesbos in Greece, the Lord directed my devotional time to Psalm 143. David is the author of the psalm and it was written during a time when he was feeling hunted, pursued, and he prayed with great urgency for help and relief from God. David’s requests v.7 “answer me quickly O Lord, my spirit fails; v8. Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go for you I lift up my soul.”

Through the words of David, God opened my eyes and melted my heart for our brothers and sisters of the M*s*im and non-Christian based faiths that largely populated the tents of Moria. The boundaries and rules which their god(s) requires of them to live out in their religious lives were the same boundaries and rules which were playing out in the daily events of Moria. Their religious foundation such as separation, fear, chaos, and anger, were all very different from my God who is about relationship, order, love, and peace. The words of Psalm 143, like so many psalms provide us strength, HOPE, and remind us of the promises of God. Psalm 62 assures us, “He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress I will never be shaken.” Throughout scripture we are provided an anchor for our souls when we are distressed and lost in the events of the world. Our M*s*im friends, however, do not know this God, this hope, or this love and do not live out of the ethos of Christ.

My interactions with my EuroRelief co-workers in Moria was instructed to be different.  As followers of Christ, we (our team) were to reflect Christ to all those we engaged with daily. We were to answer gently, speak kindly, give sacrificially, and work as if we are working for the Lord. Our team was to be the living bibles within this military compound of razor wire and concrete. We were to be the sweet fragrance of Christ as we handed out water, Chia and tomatoes, carried garbage bags of refugee belongings to their tents, and greeted new arrivals with a smile and “Sa-lam.” We would be Christ’s light to shine on the hill top of olive trees in Moria for all the world to see him and ask “Why are they here?,” “Why do they care?” “ Why do they treat us with this love?”  I have left Moria, but the lives of Moria will never leave me. I will continue to pray that God will work those questions into the hearts of my brothers and sisters in Moria and ultimately they will find Him in the answer.

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