Crises are part of life. No one anywhere is immune from suffering.
Calamity isn’t limited to groups based on gender, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, or borders, nor is it relegated to one part of the world. These are all-world problems, issues that will influence our lives no matter where or how we live. Situations whose ripple effect will stretch further than the boundaries of the problem.
The tactics used against Ukraine by Russia have caused damage, death, and destruction across a country the size of Texas. Russia, at 2,733 percent larger than Ukraine, has taken advantage of its tiny neighbor.
What’s impressive is the response of the Ukrainian people, who are refusing to give up. They’re fighting for their independence, their country, their future for their families. Their courage has inspired people all over the world as they have refused to back down and take what’s being thrown at them.
They’re standing with strength and unity.
They’ve learned from their history.
From 1932 to 1933, Ukraine suffered a man-made famine referred to as Holodomor, a Ukrainian word that means “death by hunger”. Starvation. The Soviet Union had a lower than normal harvest in 1932, and their government confiscated crops from Ukraine, often going into homes to take whatever food they had. Millions of people died from the famine. It’s believed that Joseph Stalin used this to methodically exterminate Ukrainians to eliminate an independence movement.
The Ukrainians of today are not willing to be victims.
President Zelensky has held to his commitment to stay the course with his people. He has not left his country; he’s being targeted for assassination, and must keep moving to stay safe.
It’s truly inspirational to follow a man who holds true to his convictions when they are for the good of the whole country.
It’s been wonderful to see how countries all over the world are moving to help Ukrainians in any way they can. Protests even in Russia show how distasteful this land-grabbing tactic is to others. We are all burdened by the injustice of it all.
Paul talked about this when he addressed the church at Galatia.
“Stoop down and reach out to those who are oppressed. SHARE their burdens, and so complete Christ’s law. If you think you are too good for that, you are badly deceived.” Galatians 6:2-3
What can we do? It would be easy to think we who have no government influence or provisions to fight a war can accomplish nothing.
We can pray, asking God to do what we can’t. What nobody can.
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about EVERYTHING. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand.” Philippians 4:6-7a
We can pray for the people of Ukraine, for their strength, courage, and perseverance. For those who are able to come alongside and help. We may not be boots on the ground, but we’re voices advocating before the throne of God for people who are hurting and oppressed.
It’s why Jesus came. To seek and save the lost; to provide a life we can’t provide for ourselves.
Hope still lives. Even in times of struggle and pain.
God won’t lose His own.