Certain trends die hard.

People have, for ages, been moving from situations of discomfort to less harsh localities. Abram moved to Egypt to reside there as an alien because of a famine. Generations later, Jacobs’’ (Israel’s) descendants would do the same.

Refugees have more reasons for moving, maybe, causes to include abuse and oppression, violence and war. When we understand their movements as moves to meet human need, we can be more tolerant, and not crush hope by leaving to sink so many who have already braved the roaring wind and raging sea. When they finally made it to land, I think that their expectation was that they had made it to a better quality of life.

Although refugees are whole persons, we should know that their complete wholeness may be restored as they resettle fruitfully. I remember my teenaged daughter wearing a t-shirt with the writing “a bundle of belongings isn’t all that a refugee brings. Einstein was a refugee”.

There is another long-time thing. It seems that from time immemorial, men have been prone to kill for the sake of a beautiful woman. And Abram knows that masculine weakness shrouded in what purports to be strength. This is why he tells his wife to pretend that she’s not his woman. That’s how he saves his own skin from the men who would want her to be theirs.

Because of his beautiful woman, Abram was gifted with farm animals and beasts of burden. He was also paid with male and female slaves. Those are the riches for which he sold his wife.

God has never stomached this kind of abuse. Plagues were the price on Pharaoh’s house. And the ruler of Egypt was scared. Pharaoh repented and returned the human commodity trafficked between men. Yes, it seems, human trafficking is nothing new either.

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