Over the weekend our family rented the documentary “God Grew Tired of Us.” It is the story of 3 of the “lost boys” of Sudan who were resettled in America. These were boys who had survived incredible challenges and who had grown up in Kakuna refugee camp in Kenya. The “lost boys” were children who fled Sudan by the thousands when many of them were just toddler age. Their journey was as compelling as it was disturbing. Marching over a thousand miles in search of sanctuary when the civil war broke out in their land, about half of the 27,000 died on the journey.
The young men in this documentary–Panther, Daniel and John allowed the cameras to see the challenges of relocation. The boys felt guilty for having food when they knew their brothers in Kenya were still starving. they felt selfish living well when their friends were living without. These emotions prompted them to send some of their meager earnings back to friends and family in Africa.
They longed for the deep sense of interdependence and community that had sustained them for all their years in the refugee camps. They experienced hurt and confusion when Americans allowed busyness and their desire for independence and privacy to overrule expressions of kindness and caring. They were enormously grateful for the opportunity to have a new life but baffled at how much “life” they lost when the bonds of deep relationships had to be severed in the move to America.
“ After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing near the throne and in front of the Lamb.” Revelation 7:9
How will we represent the Lord so that their vision of Him can be set right?
It is not God who has tired of these brothers and sisters in Africa–or who ignores the results of wars that continue to displace thousands— it is us.
“But Zion said, ‘I don’t get it. God has left me. My Master has forgotten I even exist.’
‘Can a mother forget the infant at her breast, walk away from the baby she bore?
But even if mothers forget, I’d never forget you—never. Look I have written your names on the backs of my hands.
The walls you’re rebuilding are never out of my sight…You’ll know then that I am GOD. No one who hopes in me ever regrets it.”
Isaiah 49:14-23 The Message