Integrated Refugee and Immigration Services (IRIS) is a non-profit organization based in New Haven, Connecticut. They help refugee families find housing, jobs, and support. With the American withdrawal from Afghanistan this month, IRIS is seeking to help a large influx of Afghan refugee families, often receiving only 24 hours’ notice before a family arrives. The organization’s leaders are calling for temporary housing—like unoccupied apartments or vacation homes—to be made available for these families. “Receiving families on short notice when we’re already at full tilt because of the pandemic operations, it’s really stretched our budget,” said Ann O’Brien, director of community engagement at IRIS. Meanwhile, the families long for a permanent dwelling too. “As of right now,” O’Brien said, “the housing market is so tight that it takes us two weeks to find permanent housing that they can afford, so we’re incurring hotel costs, which is why we’re looking for temporary housing.”
In today’s passage, Paul was thinking of leaving his temporary home behind to move into eternal dwellings. He knew his time on earth, in the earthly dwelling of his body, would someday come to an end. He longed to cast off his physical body and clothe himself with his permanent dwelling—in his permanent home. But he knew he had work to do here until that day, and he was determined to be faithful to his Lord.
- What would be your hopes if your family needed to flee from your home country?
- How eagerly do you share Paul’s desire to leave this life and put on eternity?
- How do you seek to be pleasing to the Lord while you are still in the temporary housing of this life?
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