|(Story photo courtesy Christian Aid|
Mission / Cover photo by Freedom House)
Syria (MNN) ― Over the weekend, food packages, medicine, and evangelistic materials were delivered to Syrian Christians as Lebanese Christians bravely risked their lives to deliver what they could.
"A series of house meetings were held," says Bill Bray withChristian Aid Mission. "Over 600 emergency relief packages were delivered from missionaries in Lebanon who crossed the border, and they brought in medicine and conducted these meetings."
With far over 9,000 Syrians dead from atrocity after atrocity, thousands have fled the warring nation; but others cannot afford the risk of leaving. The meetings that took place over the weekend were a way to physically reach out to suffering believers who are trapped in Syria.
The work was incredibly dangerous. Syrians leaving the country face the risk of death by shooting or mines. Those same risks cannot be far from Lebanese trying to cross into the guarded nation.
Christians are at particular risk, says Bray. The government is unlikely to attack, but believers are an easy target for extremists when the government's unable to protect them. In fact, Bray says, "There is a rise, an increase in attacks on Christians."
Despite the extreme threats facing the Lebanese believers coming into Syria and the Syrians in turn leaving the nation to stay with Lebanese church members, Christian Aid contacts have not backed down.
One missionary leader who left Lebanon to help Syrian Christians told Christian Aid, "The word ‘safe' is not in our dictionary. We live every single day in faith, not safety."
Their extreme faith and courage has not gone unrewarded. "A lot of refugees from Syria that are coming across the border are Bedouin, gypsies, and Muslim-background Syrians. They are coming to the Lord, they are accepting the Christian message, and their hearts are very open," says Bray.
In the midst of unprecedented violence, people from all backgrounds in Syria are clinging to the peace they see in Christ. While aid was distributed over the weekend, many people were also being baptized at the string of house meetings.
The church is growing quickly, but it can only grow if it is physically well, too. Medicine is particularly difficult to come by in Syria. Christian Aid is trying to provide as much as possible, but the ministry still needs a great deal of help.
Bray says one Syrian boy came down with a fever, but since his parents couldn't afford medicine, his easily-cured ailment ended up paralyzing him. If Christian Aid had been able to supply medication, says Bray, that never would have happened.
Christians are in dire need of aid and prayer. Help them physically by giving to Christian Aid with the CAMCode "400REF." Pray with them for peace in the nation, and for strength for new followers of Jesus.