By: Chestley Howell
Why would a government offer to fly its citizens home for free? According to the United Nations, in a little over three years, more than 4.7 million men, women, and children have left Venezuela desperate for a better life. So many flee daily that President Maduro is scrambling to get his people to either stay or return. He even blocked off borders to keep Venezuelans in and foreign aid out. And now the President is offering to fly Venezuelan citizens home.
What was once one of the wealthiest countries in South America is now the most desperate. The average wage is only three dollars a month. Millions of Venezuelans find themselves without food and the necessary supplies needed to survive. So they swap services, pawn off treasured jewelry & heirlooms, dig through trash piles, and even sell their hair, all in hopes of obtaining food.
The desperate situation in Venezuela should move our hearts with compassion. Yet when we consider Venezuela, do we only see people in need of financial and economic aid? Millions of Venezuelans are as spiritually impoverished as their economic situation. When Jesus looked upon the multitudes with compassion, He was not only looking at their lack of material goods or their physical needs. He also saw their spiritual state.
While we cannot turn a blind eye to the economic difficulties in Venezuela, should we not also be more concerned with their spiritual plight? Just as we should be willing to help a starving neighbor, are we just as ready to help spiritually malnourished Venezuelans? Are we willing to set aside funds to send a preacher to them? Would we be willing to go and take the Gospel to them? Venezuela is a country marked by desperation–in its need for food, for economic reform, and for the Gospel.
Would you go? Would you take the Gospel to Venezuela?