Syrian Refugee Camp Visit
Our team was praying beforehand in anticipation of visiting the Syrian Refugee Camp. Our hearts were broken for the children we had already served at Grain De Ble’s first kids camp. There was such an urgent need to help the children understand the perfecting love of God and His saving grace.
On our day of travel, we stopped at The Tru Vine Church in Zahle in the Bekaa valley, where we spoke with Pastor Jihad Haddad. This church is a beehive of activity as they run schools and ESL classes for Syrian refugees, amongst other ministries. Pastor Jihad assured us that God is providing in this area as week after week Muslims are coming to the faith. Jesus is truly standing in front of these people and revealing himself in dreams, according to hundreds of testimonies shared with Pastor Jihad.
Our next stop was a Syrian Refugee Camp, just one of hundreds in Lebanon. The border to Syria is only a five-minute drive away. As we stepped out of our air-conditioned van, we walked into clouds of dirt and sewer water draining along a gravel walkway — the only play area that the children have. The area is devoid of colour, no trees to provide shade or grass for play. We watched children play between the tents that were built on a concrete slab. Most of these tents had one light bulb, a fan, no insulation, and cushions placed on a thin mat which were used as their sleep quarters, as well as for sitting during the day. This is where we were invited in to sit.
Our hearts broke in experiencing their circumstances, but we felt a sense of joy and sorrow simultaneously as their hospitality touched our hearts. In one shelter three women who sat on the concrete floor insisted that we sit on the cushions. The women shared with us the horrors of war in Syria and their ultimate reasons for traversing the mountains and fleeing for Lebanon. They currently live a life of depravity — living in idleness, hopelessness and neediness. They rely on the church for the basic necessities but were also thankful that some of their kids were able to attend the kids camp. They were pleased to tell us that the kids were coming home to share the message of the Gospel. We were humbled by their thankful hearts.
In two of the tent shelters, we ourselves were able to share the gospel message with generations of woman and crowds of children. The spirit was upon this place and seeds were incredibly being planted. Leading these kids at camp and seeing the place they actually come from, revealed to us that our love and service to them is such huge blessing. We also felt much better prepared to serve these children at our next two days camps.
“For he delivers the needy when he calls, the poor and him how has no helper. He has pity on the weak and the needy, and saves the lives of the needy, from oppression and violence he redeems their life, and precious in their blood in his sight.” Psalm 72:12-14
Lord, we believe your promises are true and you will redeem the poor and the oppressed.
Lebanon Kids Camp Team