My ancestors emigrated to the U.S. from Norway to have a better life. I’m not sure why many people were coming at that time, but the good news must have reached the people in the old country and many decided to follow. My Great grandfather Sampson came at the age of sixteen, and at age seventeen was fighting in an Iowa regiment in the Civil War. He paid his price to become a U.S. citizen.
Our neighbors South of the border continue to seek refuge from a life of poverty and crime by entering the U.S.–many illegally, which has presented a big problem for a country. After spending a few days across the border and seeing old women begging on the streets, I understand a bit more why younger Mexicans and other South Americans see in their minds a flashing neon sign saying “Go North for the good life.” They risk their lives sneaking across mountains and the desert to get to a place of hope.
Our Earthly journey began with our baptism–a symbol of life and hope. That didn’t guarantee us an easy life, but a life within a short reach of God’s loving arms. We can’t break the rules–as do those who illegally enter the U.S.–and still expect a free pass across the border to our Heavenly home.
Lord, there are no maps for our journey to our eternal home, but we give you thanks for all who paved the way. Amen.