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    Friday, October 2, 2009

    Obama's Health care Reform

    I know this blog will step on toes and I hope it does.

    There has been a ton of airtime given to the health care reform issues. I've listened, I've read and I want to write a bit of my own thoughts. I am well aware that my position isn't held by many of my fellow-believers and that's OK. I hope we can agree to disagree and not call any one's salvation into play. I will confess that I voted for Obama in the 2009 election and if you question my salvation on that...sorry but that's ridiculous. I do not agree with him on his abortion policy, but I was heavily swayed by his education policy as well as his concern for the poor.

    I am not a huge fan of this health care reform for a couple of reasons, however I think we as American Christians need to re-think why we don't like this policy. I am not necessarily promoting the policy as something that must be adopted, I am simply wanting to challenge our opposition.

    When speaking to Christians about this policy, I have generally heard complaints like this: Obama is taking more money out of my pocket for this policy or Obama is taking my tax money hiking it and using it to get health care to illegal immigrants. What right do they have to my cash, they don't work here, they don't support this country! Also, well intentioned Christians are opposed to it because they don't like Obama and honestly just want to be quibbling over something.

    My Christian friends, Jesus gave up everything for us. Jesus was a radical giver to those in need. Jesus looked after those who were in poverty and was himself homeless and poor (Matthew 8:20). If Jesus were asked to give up his comfort and some extra percentage of his money in order to help those in need, he would. The illegal immigrants who so many despise...they sacrificed family, friends and the comfort of knowing their language because they were so desperate for something better. This is why most have fled their countries and have come to America. Our immigration policy is so strict they had to fly under the radar in order to take care of their family.

    I worked with several immigrants in NY when I lived there, talked with them and found out that they were living in a 1 bedroom apartment with 10-15 other guys in order to save money so they could send it to their families so they could eat and not die. If that is a person you want to let not receive health care on your dollar...who would you choose?

    My heart has been so burdened for the poor that I see this new health care plan, even though it will cost me something (comfort and some money) as something good for the poor.
    "Marvin, you don't get it, it goes deeper than just this issue of the poor" some may say. I am aware there are many levels to this reform that are not good, I'm not a dummy...however if we as Christians are complaining about what it will cost US...we are fighting the wrong battle...a battle Jesus wouldn't go along with.

    When doing ministry, there is sacrifice involved. Some missionaries have lost their whole family doing ministry for God. They knew they were called to the field and they lost their families. One such missionary wrote "It is Well" after such a tragic event.

    What if, we as Christians were to say: "Let's get this passed for the poor. Let's stop worrying about ourselves, our money and our comfort and worry about theirs". Because to be honest, we only have what our Heavenly Father has given us already. Nothing we have is truly ours, it's all His.

    We talk about being dangerous and "doing things for God" but what are we doing that costs us something? This question is focused on myself too, not just you. Being a dangerous follower of Christ, bringing Glory to his name will usually be sacrificial. A few examples: Abraham, Joseph, Joshua, Peter, Paul all were "Dangerous men for God" and all ended up sacrificing something.

    When I read the Bible, I see a strong Jesus who is tender towards the poor and needy and harsh to the hording Pharisees. I see a Jesus who stoops down to help the lost and challenges those with much to give much. I see a Jesus who celebrates a poor woman's wild generosity when she gives her last bit of money to God.

    I have to challenge myself: what is God calling me to sacrifice in order to make His name known? Is it my health care? Is it my immediate reception into an ER? Is it my money that will help an illegal alien? Is it my time? Is it my livelihood? I'm not sure yet.

    Let me challenge all of us: if you are opposed to this health care reform because it will hinder your "stuff" check your heart. What if this could be a great reform bill to help those who really need it?


    Anonymous said...

    Amen Marvin. I'm glad to see that you have put in your thoughts and beliefs into this great debate. There are very few of us who would be willing to sacrifice the things that are given to us by God, and I am glad to know that you are willing to. You are a true man of God. By the way, this is Paul.

    Erik said...

    Great thoughts here Marvin. Whether we find ourselves for or against our government (or it's president) we need to turn our attention to the issues that mattered most to Christ and filter all our debates of the day through that lens. Grace and peace.