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An Unnatural Reaction

An Unnatural Reaction

“We prayed for revenge.”

“Their people killed our people, burned our houses, stole our harvest and destroyed our economy. They occupied our land for more than 30 years. Our hearts were filled with hatred and enmity.” Pastor Ayoub* is one of millions of Middle Eastern people who lived under the tyranny of a neighboring nation.

“We prayed for God to take our revenge, to destroy their land as they did to our land, to sink their country with blood and tears. This is what’s happening now. Shouldn’t we be thrilled? Isn’t this the natural reaction?”

Today civil war is devastating and displacing the neighbors who once oppressed them. But believers like Pastor Ayoub and his congregation are responding not with hatred, but with love.

A supernatural response

Around the world refugees are flooding into surrounding countries, fleeing from devastating internal violence. Mass movements of people are straining the infrastructure of neighboring nations. This strain in the Middle East is particularly evident in Pastor Ayoub’s homeland, a nation of just over 4 million people that’s hosting 800,000 registered refugees and an estimated 500,000 unregistered asylum seekers—the equivalent of over a quarter of its population.

Pastor Ayoub’s small church decided to reach beyond its comfort zone, living out the gospel by assisting refugee families regardless of their religion or ethnicity.

An organization directed by a Christar worker partners with churches like Pastor Ayoub’s to help provide tangible aid for the refugees. The churches are able to personally deliver food and other aid where it is needed most.

[Now] our hearts are aching for their pain,” Pastor Ayoub says. “Our prayers are continuous for their country. Our church is working day and night to help them, to heal their wounds, to wipe their tears and to free their children. What a paradigm shift! What an amazing grace! What a wonderful savior we have!”

Open hearts, open minds

As the church reaches out in compassion to these refugees, God is working in their hearts. Many new families are now coming to Pastor Ayoub’s church on a regular basis and the weekly prayer meeting has grown from 15 to 70 participants.

Many once hostile toward Christianity have given their lives to Jesus as they have witnessed Christ’s unconditional love lived out by believers around them. “We had a wrong idea about Christianity,” they say in response to the unnatural, tangible care of Christ expressed by those who were once their enemies.

Participate by Praying:

  • Praise God for providing a wonderful opportunity to meet the needs of displaced people, to tangibly demonstrate God’s love.
  • Ask God to provide many opportunities for believers to share the gospel with  refugees as they interact with them.
  • Pray that God will give the refugees a desire to know Him.

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